Alexa Can Synthesize Animated Stories from Children’s Prompts
Kids can generate their own animated stories by collaborating with Amazon Alexa. The new Create with Alexa tool will play the stories on Echo Show smart displays using a child’s responses to a few questions when they ask the voice assistant to “make a story” for them.
“Create with Alexa” combines conversational AI and synthetic media to generate a narrative with accompanying graphics and sound. When a child says, “Alexa, make a story,” the voice assistant will ask a series of short questions about the theme, mood, and even color palette for the animation. At the moment, the theme options are limited to space exploration, underwater, and enchanted forest, but more are likely to come. They can then name the story’s protagonist and decide if they want a story that’s mysterious, silly, or happy. Alexa generates a short story, five-to-ten lines, based on the answer, and sets in place the appropriate backgrounds, props, and facial expressions on the characters. Alexa also generates the soundscape and music from a library of existing audio, arranged by the AI to match the story. Children will get a different story every time, even with the same prompts, because the AI model synthesizes the story anew with every activation. Should the child really like the story, however, they can save it in a gallery to replay over and over.
“We’ve always envisioned Alexa to be a trusted companion that brings joy and fun to the family. And we created this experience to further that vision,” Alexa AI head of product Eshan Bhatnagar said. “The moments my son and I spend together creating a fun story are priceless. They inspire me not just to improve the ‘Create with Alexa’ experience but, more broadly, to bring the power of generative AI to unlock future possibilities.”
Amazon first previewed the feature in September at its annual hardware event. Parents and children ages 4-8, the target audience, provided feedback and ideas on the feature. Create with Alexa evolved over time to add the musical element, and will soon allow children o share their story creations with others. Next on the agenda according to Bhatnagar’s six-year-old? Dinosaurs.
“We envision a world where anyone can bring their ideas to life in the form of digital creations just by using a few spoken words,” Bhatnagar said. “And Alexa will be right with them, assisting them as their co-creator.”