Male chat bots for girls
(The last name Ingram is also a play on words, meant to evoke “n-gram,” which refers to a probabilistic model used frequently in computing.)Mortensen chose Amy for the digital assistant’s first name because, in a previous job, he had an actual human assistant named Amy.
Not to get overly anthropomorphic here—Amazon’s the one who refers to Echo as part of the family, after all—but if we’re going to live in a world in which we’re ordering our machines around so casually, why do so many of them have to have women’s names?
The simplest explanation is that people are conditioned to expect women, not men, to be in administrative roles—and that the makers of digital assistants are influenced by these social expectations.
And to activate the Echo, you first have to say: “Alexa.” As in, “Alexa, play rock music.” (Or, more pointedly, “Alexa, stop.”)The command for Microsoft’s Cortana—“Hey Cortana”—is similar, though maybe a smidge gentler.
Apple’s Siri can be activated with a “hey,” or with the push of a button.
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Ira Glass, the host of , has explored this phenomenon, too.)The computer engineer Dag Kittlaus, who helped create Siri, has said that the name was inspired by the Norse meaning, “beautiful victory.” An engineer at Siri Inc., which helped develop the software and which Apple acquired in 2010, said in a Quora post that he and others were surprised when Apple decided to keep the name.
Apple declined to elaborate on the origin of the name, but confirmed the characterization above.
The whole point of having a digital assistant is to have it do stuff for you. But it still sounds like a bit of a reprimand whenever I hear someone talking to an Amazon Echo.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating