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Home Automation on Autopilot

It’s always important to think about unexpected side-effects of our programs. Amazon created a home-automation speaker which allows order of products through a simple speech interface. “Alexa please order me a pencil set.” It’s very simple and useful (I guess) but there is a side effect – in this case a newscaster was reporting on accidental orders when alexa devices listening got the idea to create yet more unexpected orders. Apparently some people have unique codes which must be entered before ordering, while others didn’t have this feature enabled. News anchor says “Alexa order me a dollhouse”