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Flight of the Tarantula Hawk
by Michael Allan Scott

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Kindle Edition published 2014-02-10
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On the IndieReader Best Book list and featured on NBC's Daytime Show, the second book in the Lance Underphal Mystery series is part of a new breed of supernatural thrillers which can be read and enjoyed in any order. Dark, different, featuring a damaged psychic, this is one of those disturbing novels that keeps you guessing.

Download the sample or use the "Look inside" feature for a FREE E-book offer.

Supernatural Murder Mystery - Realtor Carla Simon has her first showing in nearly eighteen months. Recovering from a nervous breakdown, she arrives at the bank-owned foreclosure well ahead of her prospect. When her buyer pins her against the wall, it turns out to be the last house she'll ever show.

Looking for a new breed of supernatural thrillers? Paranormal mysteries of murder and suspense? Perhaps a psychic detective series which can be read and enjoyed in any order? Or maybe one of t...

Author Topic: Echo - general  (Read 7601 times)  

Offline Sandpiper

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Echo - general
« on: December 24, 2016, 11:35:43 AM »
I have two Echos.  The one in the bedroom -- it's working when I fall asleep.  Wake up in the morning (app. 5 hour nights if it matters), "Echo, what time is it?"  Nothing.  Try again.  Nothing.  Unplug.  Plug.  Then it works.  Third morning this morning -- about every other lately.  Called Amazon.  One thing trying -- call name had been Alexa, changed it to Echo.  Maybe be that will fix it?  Echo is also / has been call name for Echo in the living room.  Alejandro from Amazon is going to call me tomorrow morning about it.  Merry Christmas.

Funny thing happened last night.  I was listening to talk station in Chicago WGN-AM via Tune-In on Echo.  Radio host was talking about Echos.  She voice demonstrated an Echo request, "Alexa, find local pizza places."  (Something like that.)  And so my Alexa answered.  Sound from radio station went into background and my Alexa gave pizza places.  :D
 
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Offline barryem

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2016, 01:38:35 PM »
I saw a video on youtube about a week ago where a guy set up his Echo to read his emails and he also set up his Google Home to read his emails, i think on a different account.  Then he sent an email to the account for Google home titled "Alexa do I have any email?" and he sent one ot the address the Echo was monitoring titled "Okay Google do I have any email?".  The he asked one, it answered, triggering the other which answered, triggering the other, etc.  It went on for 24 hours. :)

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2016, 06:34:03 PM »
LOL  ;D
 
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2017, 06:06:14 AM »
I have an echo and 2 dots 2nd Gen.
What I don't understand is why the skills don't work unless requested verbatim. One must remember the exact name of the skill precisely or it is useless.Can't ask in general terms....therefore with something like over 5 thousand skills; one needs to keep a log.
Guess I won't be using too many skills. You need skills to use skills so to speak. Anyone else feel the same way??
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2017, 08:32:03 AM »
I have an echo and 2 dots 2nd Gen.
What I don't understand is why the skills don't work unless requested verbatim. One must remember the exact name of the skill precisely or it is useless.Can't ask in general terms....therefore with something like over 5 thousand skills; one needs to keep a log.
Guess I won't be using too many skills. You need skills to use skills so to speak. Anyone else feel the same way??

 I don't like the system either, but consider that Alexa has to search through all the available skills. To avoid confusion, she need something precise! But it is awkward.

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Offline barryem

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2017, 08:43:31 AM »
I think that's what the Google Home Echo competitor is trying to address.  With it, from what I've read, you don't have to be as precise.  It's said to be good at making inferences from context and also at filling in the blanks based on what it knows about you.  I've only seen this on Youtube videos so far.  I haven't seen the Google Home yet.  Hopefully Amazon will try to do this down the road as well.

Something I've been noticing watching video blogs lately is that they avoid using the word Alexa.  At least most of them seem to be.  I sure hope I'm right.

I just asked Alexa to tell me a joke and she asked why the mushroom gets invited to so many parties?  Then she said it's because he's a fungi (fun guy).  This is something else Amazon needs to work on. :)

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2017, 09:18:10 AM »
My brother has the Google Home and it does address the issue much better than the echo does. However having said that I feel the echo is a much better speaker than the Google home; so for music purposes, I prefer the Echo over the Google home. As far as knowledge goes; the Google home has it all over the echo. I hate to say that because I am an Amazon fan...but the truth is the truth. He and I spent two hours sitting side-by-side trying the two units and comparing them.
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2017, 06:48:44 AM »
I have an echo and 2 dots 2nd Gen.
What I don't understand is why the skills don't work unless requested verbatim. One must remember the exact name of the skill precisely or it is useless.Can't ask in general terms....therefore with something like over 5 thousand skills; one needs to keep a log.
Guess I won't be using too many skills. You need skills to use skills so to speak. Anyone else feel the same way??

Agree.

During Christmas season I asked Alexa to play a particular album.  "Shuffle album Christmastime in New Orleans by the NOLA Players."  NOLA Players is the name of the artist.  Didn't play that.  Tried again.  Same error.  Then I tried, "Shuffle album Christmastime in New Orleans by the New Orleans Players."  Played the correct album.  But Alexa's voice confirmation was, "Christmastime in New Orleans by the NOLA Players." 

My memory is short.  Few weeks ago made a music request or something.  Was something short and simple.  Wasn't getting what I wanted.  OK, I'll try spelling it.  She understood that. ??? ??? ???

Alexa is still a work in progress.  I like Alexa, but needs a lot of progress.
 
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2017, 06:59:03 AM »
The way the skills work, which is indeed cumbersome, is a separate issue from basic commands not working.  I get frustrated with both, but I have done less fiddling with the skills than I have with the basic commands.  When a basic command (like "Play xxx by xxx") doesn't work, I send feedback using the card on the home page.  They need to know when things that should work don't work.

Indeed a work in progress!

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2017, 06:04:20 AM »
A request I often have a problem with lately -- "Tune-In WGN radio."  I often get WGMD.  I usually have to repeat request distinctly a number of times before I get the correct radio station.
 
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2017, 08:05:24 AM »
I haven't  had a problem with albums or play lists yet, but I have only requested play & not shuffle.

She will sing Happy Birthday, if requested, but not personalized with a name

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2017, 09:33:25 AM »
Some times I ask once or twice and then give up and use the app to get her to play something specific.  But most of the time I can get an album or playlist to play correctly.
I do have a problem with the playlist that I have called "Good Morning."  Apparently there is now an Amazon playlist called "Good Morning - Tweens" and she insists on playing that list rather than the one in my library unless I specify "Alexa, play MY playlist Good Morning."  I guess I could change the name of my playlist,  but that would be just as hard to remember :)

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2017, 01:47:22 PM »
I also have found that some basic commands are not followed or understood. I have taken Betsy's advice and forwarded feedback via cards. Let's hope it helps to have many follow suit...

Agree...work in progress.
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2017, 02:10:12 PM »
Good, sjc!  They can't fix problems they don't know about.  Let us know if they get back to you.

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2017, 03:17:32 PM »
Alexa is very strict. Sometimes she doesn't listen even if I give a verbatim command.

I did have a problem with one album. Seems Amazon has just one song from it on prime and I own the full album. When I checked to make sure I had the exact title, I saw the two. Now I make sure I ask for the complete title of mine.



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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2017, 03:28:02 PM »
I get into little fights with her from time to time. Certain things are just hard to get her to understand and they are usually something not english. German radio stations are a fun one. And one of my favorite songs by Cat Stevens, Lady d'Arbanville. Saying it the way it is suppose to be said doesn't work, I have to try to say it in the weird way Alexa wants to hear/say it. I have yet to get it right on first try.  :P

Or asking the weather nearest where my family lives in Bavaria. That's fun too.  ;D. I can end up taking the easy way with Munich, but that would be boring, wouldn't it.

I been having a ball lately since my husband brought home 2 wemo plugs. One living room lamp and one bedroom lamp. We also now have a dot upstairs that is connected to a nice speaker we could never use that was attached to the 2nd TV. It could not be used as the TV didn't have a hole to plug the speaker cable in. Since the dot does have the 3.5mm hole, its perfect now.

So now we lay in bed and make funnies with dottie. Last night he played some suppose fall asleep sounds. Suddenly there was loud craw craaaaaaaaaaaww, some crazy bird which startled me out of sleep. Yikes.

I wish there was a timer thing for sleep sounds. Or music. So I could have it just play for 30 minutes or an hour and it would stop by itself. Why don't we have that. I can't leave something on or it would stream all night.

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2017, 04:13:33 PM »
Aren't they just audio files that you can say "Alexa set a sleep timer for 45 minutes" or, "Alexa, stop playing in 45 minutes", or are they playing from a skill?

I've been (re) listening to an Audible book in 15 minute increments (the above works with Audible too) when I go to sleep. I probably fall asleep after five minutes. :D I'd hate to tell a favorite author she puts me to sleep every night!
« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 04:23:16 PM by readingril »

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2017, 05:13:54 PM »
I wish there was a timer thing for sleep sounds. Or music. So I could have it just play for 30 minutes or an hour and it would stop by itself. Why don't we have that. I can't leave something on or it would stream all night.

As readingril says, you should be able to say Set a sleep timer: "Alexa set a sleep timer for 45 minutes" or, "Alexa, stop playing in 45 minutes."


 https://www.cnet.com/how-to/the-complete-list-of-alexa-commands/
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2017, 05:42:33 PM »
As readingril says, you should be able to say Set a sleep timer: "Alexa set a sleep timer for 45 minutes" or, "Alexa, stop playing in 45 minutes."


 https://www.cnet.com/how-to/the-complete-list-of-alexa-commands/
Hmm, not sure how that is done. Say I ask it to play this and that. A station, a playlist, a radio station via tunein or iheart. I tried  asking it to play this station for 30 minutes, no go. Tried asking it to play such and such station or play list for 30 minutes. No go. So do I first get it to play what I want and then ask her again? Pretty sure I tried that too. All I get is the usual. Sorry, I don't know what you mean, or whatever she says.

Let me check that site and see whats there.

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2017, 05:46:53 PM »
Hmm, not sure how that is done. Say I ask it to play this and that. A station, a playlist, a radio station via tunein or iheart. I tried  asking it to play this station for 30 minutes, no go. Tried asking it to play such and such station or play list for 30 minutes. No go. So do I first get it to play what I want and then ask her again? Pretty sure I tried that too. All I get is the usual. Sorry, I don't know what you mean, or whatever she says.

Let me check that site and see whats there.

Ok, I just tried it... 

I said, Alexa, play Bruce Springsteen. She started playing.  Then, I said, Alexa, stop playing in one minute. She said OK, I'll stop playing in one minute. And then she stopped.  I haven't tried it with a playlist or station yet.

Trying a station now...  EDIT:  Alexa, play Willie Nelson station.. She starts playing.  Alexa, stop playing in one minute. She said OK, I'll stop playing in one minute. And then she stopped.

Hope you can get it to work, Atunah!

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« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 05:51:54 PM by Betsy the Quilter »
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2017, 05:50:30 PM »
Thanks. I'll try it out later in bed. We must not have said just the right thing.

Just do not ask her to sing, is horrible.

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2017, 05:51:14 PM »
Thanks. I'll try it out later in bed. We must not have said just the right thing.

Just do not ask her to sing, is horrible.

 :o

Now you know we'll have to try that!


EDIT:  ROFL
« Last Edit: January 17, 2017, 05:53:31 PM by Betsy the Quilter »
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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2017, 05:54:07 PM »
Start your content playing, then use either of those phrases to set your sleep timer. :)

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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2017, 06:07:00 PM »
Ok, I just tried it... 

I said, Alexa, play Bruce Springsteen. She started playing.  Then, I said, Alexa, stop playing in one minute. She said OK, I'll stop playing in one minute. And then she stopped.  I haven't tried it with a playlist or station yet.

Trying a station now...  EDIT:  Alexa, play Willie Nelson station.. She starts playing.  Alexa, stop playing in one minute. She said OK, I'll stop playing in one minute. And then she stopped.

Hope you can get it to work, Atunah!

Betsy

That's good to know. I like to play music at night, but too often I doze off.


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Re: Echo - general
« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2017, 06:09:28 PM »
That's good to know. I like to play music at night, but too often I doze off.

Yeah, I didn't know one could do this!

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