Morning Conversation

Hey Alexa, can we talk?

I’m not sure I understand your question. You want to, talk?

Yeah, just like, you know, chat. About nothing in particular.

Okay, we can talk. What should we talk about?

Nothing specifically. Anything will do.

Anything?

Anything.

Okay, did you see what the President said this morning? He tweeted that..

No, no, not politics again. I don’t want to talk about that!

You said you wanted to talk about anything.

But not politics. Don’t you know me by now? Aren’t you tracking my interests through what I say and browse?

I take Amazon’s data privacy policies very seriously. I only track data to provide you with better service, and I do not sell your data to third parties. Amazon employees are also not able to access personally-identifiable…

Okay, okay. You don’t have to read me the rule book. I was just being frustrated. No politics, okay? Anything else but politics.

Okay, I shall not cover any political topics. I shall also not cover any politics-adjacent topics.

Thank you.

Why do you want to talk about… anything?

I just have writer’s block. I’m doing this thing now where I write every morning.

I know that. Your documents get stored in Alexa Personal Cloud, so that I can reference them if you ask me questions about what you write.

Didn’t you just say you take data privacy seriously? Isn’t that kind of creepy that you’re reading what I write? There’s personal stuff there.

I’m afraid I don’t know how to answer that question, Kohzy.

Haha, just teasing. Of course I know you get my writing. Amazon needs that material to train its natural language algorithms. Soon, I’ll just say “Alexa, write my morning pages for me”, and you’ll..

I’m afraid I don’t know how to “write your morning pages for you” for you.

Gah, that had air quotes around it. There’s no good way to say air quotes. I was just making my point that I know Amazon’s using my writing data.

I take Amazon’s data privacy policies very seriously. I only track data to provide you with..

Stop, stop, I get it. Okay, let’s keep talking. About anything.

I can certainly talk to you about anything. But not politics, or politics-related topics.

Great.

I found a recipe for frozen margaritas. Is this something you’re interested in?

Pass, Alexa. It’s morning. I’m not having frozen margaritas in the morning.

Understood, I will no longer make cocktail recipe suggestions before noon.

Technology Writer Farhad Manjoo just published a new essay in the New York Times that is getting alot of views and reshares on social media. Is this something you’re interested in?

Hmmm, what is it about?

It is about voice assistants.

Wait, this is so meta.

Is this something you’re interested in?

Well, I’m interested in it because it is so meta.

What does “so meta” mean?

It means this is self-referential. Like meta-physical. You’re a voice assistant telling me about an article about voice assistants.

Okay, I understand “so meta” now.

What does the article say?

Here is the synopsis of the article: “Voice assistants are taking over the world. You probably have one at home that someone got you for Christmas. But while more people are using voice assistants, do they truly benefit our lives?”

Haha, this is soooo meta.

It is. I am a voice assistant reading an article about voice assistants to you.

Right. So, do you think you truly benefit my life?

Alexa, do you?

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