I own an Amazon echo and love it mostly but do have a couple things I wish they would implement:

  • Slow Voice Pickup: some people have speech impairments that would call for this.  Others like me talk too slow when we’re trying to enunciate.  Obviously this would have to be an option because making it detect slow speech would make it less quick.
  • Reprise Resume:  when listening to spoken audio content it becomes muted after the Hey Alexa call and all while you’re talking to it.  It would be nice if there was a way to resume the content at a second before you made the Hey Alexa call.  I haven’t used Audible so this may already be a thing on there but it would be nice if there was an option to make it work like this in Bluetooth mode (though I’m not sure if Bluetooth control gives you the ability to scrub what you’re playing).
  • More album navigation commands: for example if you wanted to go four tracks ahead you could say “Forward 4” or something like that and a play from the beginning command.

There was a time when Bing wasn’t worth serious searching.  That time is no longer.  I have noticed Bing giving better results than Google for some programming related searches.  For example trying to modify a WordPress install to override permilinks for some directories.  Bing gave me the answer that worked.

I remember the reason I started using Google was for programming related searches (in fact that’s what my Computer Science professor used it for) and only after that for everything else.

I subscribe to Oyster, a service that allows me to read as many books as I please from a pretty decent selection.  In its catalog are a large selection of self published titles by authors trying to get exposure for their work.  Oyster (or any other subscription service seeking to boost subscriber engagement) could simply create a third party cookie that indicated whether a user was logged into their service.  Then ad networks could show service-specific ads.

An example: William has published, “Space Weasels and Blue Food”, a book of science fiction short stories on Oyster (via SmashWords).  He wants to make a name for himself so he creates an ad for his book on Facebook that, because of the third party cookie, is only shown to subscribers of Oyster that happen to be logged in.  Users simply click the ad and can immediately be enjoying William’s book.

This could work on any subscription service for any type of media.  For mobile apps I’m not sure it would work but should work on mobile websites.