2020-10-16 13:33:57 UTC
I wanted a wireless set for my bedroom so that my DAB set could go back
where it belongs, in the kitchen. So I bought myself an Amazon Echo Plus
to sit on the bedside table.
I said "Alexa, play Radio 4" and she played Radio 4.
I said "Alexa, play The Archers", and she played the previous day's
episode of The Archers.
I said "Alexa, what's the cube root of 3?" and she said it was 1.4422
(although she didn't specify the precision, which is naughty)
I said "Alexa, what's the square root of minus one?) and she said "the
square root of minus one is the imaginary number i".
I said "Alexa, what's the weather like in Sydney, Nova Scotia", and she
replied plausibly although I couldn't vouch for accuracy. It sounded
better than the weather in Glasgow.
In connection with a previous thread I said "Alexa, play Mad World by
Tiers for Fears" and she played just that.
I said "Alexa, play Radio 3" followed by "Alexa, set a sleep alarm for
oh oh thirty-two tomorrow and she played an interesting selection of
late-night music culmininating in the opening bars of the Madrigal
Nocturne from La Cheminée du Roi by Darius Milhaud, then stopping
leaving me to sink into the arms of Morpheus.
I said "Alexa, who is Morpheus and what is he doing in my bed?" and she
told me he was the god of dreams and sleep, and cited Ovid. I lied about
the second half of the sentence.
So far, so good. But then...
I said "Alexa, play Hallelujah" and she played the Leonard Cohen song by
some cove called Jeff Buckley who sang it in the arrangement by John
Cale. Apparently I have to specify "Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen" to hear
I said "Alexa, play Tosca", and she skipped the whole of the first act
and most of the second.
I said "Alexa, play Beethoven's 9th symphony" and she missed all but the
second half of the fourth movent.
I said "Alexa, play Carmen" and she played something contemporary and
American that had nothing to do with Spanish gypsies or bullfighters.
I said "Alexa, play Carmen by George Bizet" and she skipped a big chunk
of the first act.
I said "Alexa, play Siegfried" and she played somebody talking in German
without a tuba in earshot.
Alexa seems to have a hangup about non-popular music. Has anyrat managed
to work it out yet?