Advice on project direction

I am looking for some advice as to whether or not my project and skill set would be right for the matrix creator.

Let me start by saying I am adept at javascript, c#, and have primarily done web and desktop application development for windows. I have not used or played with a PI and am not very familiar with its OS.

I was lead here by my use of My Amazon Echo and integrating it with my home automation software. While Alexa works very nice for the specific software I am using the speech interface does not seem natural enough. By this I mean to access the automation software I have to say thing like “Alexa Tell…”. To me true interaction should be completely normal. For example having a key would for the device of “George” (this being the automation server key word), I could just say “George turn on the lights”, or “George I am home”. This seems more natural than saying "Alexa…TELL George to turn on the lights.

My project is to create a hardware device that would take voice commands process it and send that command to a application I have running on my home automation server. The server would then run its own routines to decide what should be done and when finished would return a “phrase” to the device to be spoken out loud.

The Creator opened up many more options. I would also be able to use the device to report temps to the automation. I would even be able to use facial recognition.

At this point I am completely unsure as to what voice service I would be looking at to use. I could use an opinion on that. And over all I would like to know if the scope of my project is something that fits with the Creator.

Thanks much!