When Kaia summons Alexa: a developmental toddler milestone in the 21st century

Since our last trip to Australia, Kaia has definitely indicated an interest in wanting to interact with Amazon Alexa (at our home) and with Google Home (Chris’s parents’ device at their house). In Melbourne, she successfully got Google to recognize when she would yell out “Google,” but her command after that was always so muddled that it wouldn’t recognize what she was saying. But she’s gotten better at enunciating her words more clearly, and she’s also gotten more detailed with her asks, whether it’s to a device or to us. Instead of saying “I want plate,” now she says, “I want my blue plate.” Instead of previously saying, “Play ‘Wheels on the Bus,'” now, she says, “Play ‘Wheels on the Bus’ by Mr. Ray (or Coco Melon).” This weekend, she successfully summoned Alexa two times: the first time was when she heard me ask about the weather, and she repeated me and said, “Alexa! What’s the weather today?” Alexa actually responded back with today’s weather report! And then a few minutes later, she yelled out, “Alexa! Play ‘Wheels on the Bus’ by Mr. Ray!” And Alexa obeyed and did it! Kaia’s reached a new toddler milestone in a day and age of voice-activated, AI powered devices! No one would have thought this was a big deal previously, but this does actually mean something: it means Kaia’s speech has become clearer and is understandable to the average person instead of just those who know her. My sweet baby is growing into a tiny human who can have a pseudo relationship with a device now!

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