I’m no fan of Amazon’s Echo, nor other smart speaker devices. The idea of voluntarily installing a surveillance device in my home makes no sense as far as I’m concerned. However, this did not stop me from enjoying the video below, basically a parody of a late 1980s technology tv show about “the wonders of the world wide web.” It features a review of an amazing new product, Amazon’s Alexa, using state of the art 1988 technologies. First, it’s hilariously nostalgic for anyone who regularly used a computer during this time, and probably an eye opener for those who didn’t, given how differently (and slowly) things worked back then. I particularly like the new-fangled Amazon Music service, which downloads songs of your choice to cassette tape.

David Crotty

David Crotty

David Crotty is a Senior Consultant at Clarke & Esposito, a boutique management consulting firm focused on strategic issues related to professional and academic publishing and information services. Previously, David was the Editorial Director, Journals Policy for Oxford University Press. He oversaw journal policy across OUP’s journals program, drove technological innovation, and served as an information officer. David acquired and managed a suite of research society-owned journals with OUP, and before that was the Executive Editor for Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, where he created and edited new science books and journals, along with serving as a journal Editor-in-Chief. He has served on the Board of Directors for the STM Association, the Society for Scholarly Publishing and CHOR, Inc., as well as The AAP-PSP Executive Council. David received his PhD in Genetics from Columbia University and did developmental neuroscience research at Caltech before moving from the bench to publishing.


1 Thought on "A Review of Amazon’s Alexa — From 1988"

What? No expansion card to install or DIP switches/jumpers to change? Implausible …

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