Should You Bring “Alexa” Home?
Who is Alexa?
Alexa isn't who. Alexa is more of a what. "She" is a cloud-based, voice service that powers the Amazon Echo (available at Abes of Maine). Alexa allows users to interact with their devices in a smarter way using language.
What Can Alex Do?
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- Tell you about the latest headlines in the news
- Know if you need an umbrella or coat- just ask her "Alex, what's the weather?"
- Planning a BBQ, know if you should plan for rain with an extended forecast
- Set an alarm clock (take a nap and ask Alexa to wake you up in an hour)
- Set a timer- perfect for at-home chefs and bakers, it's also if you're dying your hair at home, can't tell you how many times, I left my dye in too long, let's just say the results weren't "pretty"
- Can't find your smartphone to check the date or time, don't worry, just ask Alexa
- Play your favorite songs (by artist, album or song) using Amazon music
- Need to catch up on reading? Listen to your favorite books and podcasts on Audible; Alexa can skip chapters, go back to a previous chapter, and more
- Keep up with your favorite sports and teams; find out if the Knicks won the game last night, when they're playing again, and more
- Remember "stuff" at the grocery store and mastering your to-do list has never been easier; just say, "Alexa, add coffee to my shopping list" and "Alexa, remember to pick up Kelly from ballet class on Wednesday"
- Alexa has built-in Wikipedia; ask basic questions about math, science, literature, history, etc.
- Not sure what a word means or how to spell it? Alexa has got you covered!
Alexa can do a lot, and she’s always getting smarter. So if she doesn’t do something now, chances are she will in the near future. Amazon is always learning from its customers. It’s taking the constructive criticism and positive feedback it receives from its customers and is using that information to build a better product that’s aligned with people’s needs.
So should you bring HAL (I mean, Alexa,) home? Apparently, if you bring up the famous line from Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, Alexa will respond by mimicking HAL's response. She’ll remind you that she's not HAL and that you're not in space.
It's exciting because technologies like Alexa and Siri are sort of early attempts of humanizing A.I. I guess it's an attempt to normalize the presence of these smarter devices in our homes. So pick up your Alexa in white or black at Abes of Maine and enjoy the convenience of hands-free shopping, organization, and knowledge seeking. Abes of Maine qualified staff will help you with any question you may have.
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