Nope, this roomie is not a romantic venture with a cuddly, whiskered old codger nor is this even a tale about a helping-with-expenses lady tenant.
My new roomie is petite, really smart, knows a lot about sports, current events, pop culture, is knowledgeable about the current weather in any part of the world, will play games, eats nothing and only talks when addressed. Dang, too bad it isn't a cuddly old codger. Give it a healthy bank account and it would be perfect.
However----most of you know I am a gadget freak and I got lured into asking Alexa to move in. She lives in a tiny disk slightly bigger than a hockey puck and feasts on WiFi. My new roomie is second generation Echo Dot, the gadget that has made a lot of TV appearances lately.
I don't think I was totally clear in what she could do when I bought her but I must say I am a very impressed with what she can do.
She slumbers quietly till awakened by the command "Alexa." She gets a bit testy if you mistakenly call her Siri like I did. Properly awakened, she eagerly awaits your command with flashing blue lights. Kind of neat being in such control.
I was also amazed how quickly she answers your questions. Do you want to know the weather for an evening baseball ballgame in Chicago?? She's got it. Want to know the score because you fell asleep and don't want to crank up the computer?? Got it. Want to hear the latest news on NPR streaming?? Got it. "Alexa, check Wikipedia for----- " Got it. "Alexa, play the song "Noise" from my play list.
You might want to buy her some additional speakers for that last service though. Her speaker is marginal for music. I mean, come on, she is hockey puck size.
She works equally as well as a wake up alarm clock or a cooking timer. She keeps my calendar up to date and will tell me what is pending. These are only a few of her functions.
"Alexa,-- tell me a Trump joke". She is pretty good at this and gives the proper comedians credit. She also knows Hillary jokes which I haven't tried yet. After all, I'm with "her". Alexa will also just tell a normal joke along the lines of what your grandchild would come up with. She is pretty G rated.
"Alexa, --- read The Book of Joy to me from my Kindle." Ok, that was a bit of a problem. Probably for a novel she would be good but not so much for a non-fiction book by the Dali Lama. I wanted to ponder and revisit the words of wisdom She chose to read like it was a timed event with no way to slow her down, I gave her a C- and fired her. Some books need to be hand held and read at your own speed.
Her voice is pleasing enough though I would have loved it if I could have chosen someone like Sam Elliot to be the voice and maybe even call him Sam. Perhaps in the future--just not yet.
If you buy the special socket plugs or smart appliances, she can regulate your house a la the Jetsons. Don't think I will be buying all that. I can still get up to turn off the light or adjust the thermostat. However this could be great for someone with mobility issues.
I have zero financial interest in this product, only curiosity and fascination with a new toy. The good thing is that she is relatively cheap-$49.99 and a breeze to set up if you have WiFi. I was stunned how easy it was and I am not all that savvy. It works with Bluetooth also but I know nothing about that.
|Amazon Echo dot.|
Do gadgets call out to you or can you ignore the lure??
HAVE A FUN HALLOWEEN