Tuesday, 25 September, 2018

Paranormal … Alexa - Amazon's digital assistant laughs and spreads fear to its users!

A small cylindrical black speak-like object sits on a kitchen counter top Alexa's new Follow-Up Mode can handle back-to-back requests
Kayla Schwartz | 12 March, 2018, 16:44

One user said he had asked the smart assistant to play certain music but Alexa reportedly defined the word "please" instead.

The basic idea is simple, and a little bit obvious in hindsight. With Follow-Up Mode, Alexa will listen for 5 seconds after she's done responding to you to see if you have anything else to ask.

"The blue indicator light on the Echo device remains on for a few seconds, letting you know that Alexa is active and ready for your next request", Amazon explained in a support note. Even, needless to say, just mentioning the word Alexa can get her going and seeking a command. If you don't, she'll just go back to sleep automatically without saying anything else.

An explanation for this behavior, which Amazon has given, according to the British "Guardian" and the BBC, is that in some rare cases the personal digital assistant listens to the non-existent command "Alexa laughed". You can't, for instance, say "Alexa, turn off the lights and set the thermostat to 68".

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Amazon will change the command for laughter to "Alexa, can you laugh?" and disable the shorter command. If you say nothing, it will soon go off to show she's stopped listening. Alexa will not respond to follow-up requests "if she detects that speech was background noise or that the intent of the speech was not clear", Amazon wrote.

To enable Follow-up Mode on your Alexa device, open the Alexa app and head to the settings. Select your device then toggle the Follow-Up Mode switch.

The feature appears to be an option for the entire Echo lineup, as well as some third-party Alexa devices, though it's now only available for US English. Obviously you can't make a video call to a regular Echo, but that should be obvious seeing as how it doesn't have a camera.

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