Amazon Echo – Not Only Can It Speak, It Answers

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Okay, okay, it has arrived in some reviewers hands, though not mine.  (Just learned a friend has Prime.)

The Amazon Echo looks like a talking fad, no more than a Furby or Siri.  Entertaining yet, but how useful and long will you be entertained or get some usage out of it?

That’s the question most need to ask themselves before plunking money down on anything.

The review sounds wonderfully clear as a SHOULD BUY, but they talk only about how to voice control their music from 30 feet away.

Read it here:

My testing of said unit is going to require about 3 days of testing.

First Day: Asking random questions, such as ‘How do I set a website as a start-page for  Mozilla Firefox?’ to ‘Send email to Eli, subject: Have You See This?  Hey Eli, this Amazon Echo is going to be the thing for elderly people.  sadly if you can read this, that means tech support is going to be replaced in one full sweep of a summer IF Amazon ques up tech questions asked about many different devices.  This was sent via Amazon Echo using only my voice.  Thanks.  Have a good one.’

Also asking math questions that I ask Siri, from “what is 2345 x 2 billion?” (4,690,000,000,000) to “How do you open a fresh oyster?”  The questions will be ranged from everyday computer questions to just plain out ‘human questions’.

Second Day: Dictionary Day, looking up random words and asking “What is the definition of solicitation?”  (think of a door-to-door sales person annoying you and asking Amazon Echo that and it answers you.)  Going through at least 300+ words for cross-referencing.

Third Day: Having friends, young and old ask it questions they would normally ask me, computer, cooking, map and geography related.

Once that test is over, I can say “YES!  This is a great buy, it answers just about EVER question that could be answered by looking it up on the internet.  Or I will say “NO.  This device is fun and entertaining, but more like an 8 Ball.  Pre-canned things and not accessing much external data.  But if you are doign yout taxes, you can say “What is $50k – $2500 – $1500 -$355 – $225 equal?” just by saying it aloud.

But with that said…  If all things are correct, meaning it can search the internet and pull back viable useful information, such as how to do things, like program your new TV Remote by brand to you saying “My computer is frozen, how do I fix it?” and it pulls up

AE: What OS are you using?
You: Windows XP.
AE: you do know know that is no longer supported by Microsoft on April 8, 2014.  You might want to think about upgrading.  But here are some things suggested to resolve your issue.

Option 1: Restore your PC.
Option 2: Boot your computer into safe mode and follow these directions.
Option 3: Take your computer to the nearest recommended computer shop.

You: Option 1 did not work.

AE: Option 3 is advised.

End the ‘tech support’, but imagine that for other devices and such if it can do that.

What do you think will happen if it is successful in being the ‘super question answering’ machine?

How will it affect: businesses, tech support, education, books, and more?

What’s your take or speculations?


Warren Galloway

Warren Galloway is a currently a freelance multimedia web designer. Is that even a title any more? Digital Media Specialist - You Want it Digitally, I can do it. "Eli for President, we should be happy, but also very afraid."

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