Jim’s WebLetter for 5/12/18


For my Dutch speaking friends, Hoi hoe gaat het?

And Happy Mother’s Day!

This week, Google broadcast their yearly keynote prior to the conference for developers on YouTube and rolled out a bunch of new innovations, particularly with Google Assistant.

Since I use Assistant for everything from keeping my shopping list to learning a foreign language (Dutch, at the present), I paid close attention to the newest features. I have to say, Assistant just got better, and in the next few weeks will far surpass what it is doing now.

Friends, if you aren’t using it on your phone or tablet, I can only ask why not! Kids are using it to help with their homework, business people are setting appointments through calendar and like me, shoppers keep lists of things needed when they (we) go out.

A brand new feature of Assistant about to be made public is Duplex. This feature sets appointments by phone call for you. It’s voice command and about as cool as you will hear anywhere. CNET has a video showing demonstrations of Duplex. Check it out … https://www.cnet.com/videos/robot-or-human-google-duplex-will-leave-you-guessing/

Now, once you recover from seeing those demonstrations, here are a few other things Assistant can handle.

Set an alarm for something you need to check on, set your clock for wake time (great for naps!), play music on command, weather forecasts, answer questions you have about product pricing, the stock market, ideas for Mother’s Day presents (get the hint?), and how to spell a word. Stop right here … pet peeve… misuse of words in sentences like “I am going to” instead of “I am going, too”. No more excuses! Ask Google Assistant!

And just this week, you have 6 different voices to choose from for your Assistant. Soon, they’re rolling out John Legend’s voice, too! (Notice the correct use of the word)

And if that’s not enough, Google has a Pretty Please application that gently teaches your young children to politely ask for things by saying “please” and “thank you” to Assistant. https://www.cnet.com/news/googles-pretty-please-feature-wants-to-help-you-enforce-manners/

There are also a number of special things Assistant can do that are a cure for boredom (just say, “Ok Google, I’m bored” and see what happens) to learning your true nickname (I got Argyle Sockhopper, don’t laugh). To learn more, just ask … “OK Google, what can you do”?

If you don’t own a Google Home device, or an Android phone or tablet, you can go to Apple Store and download Assistant for IOS devices for free that works pretty well. So don’t be afraid to try it.

I think once you begin using it, you’ll be like me … an Assistant fan. “OK Google, tell me a joke” …

“Why did the school kids eat their homework? Because their teacher told them it was a piece of cake”. (Cue sound effects and emoticons)

Until next time … enjoy! Voor nu tot ziens … (goodbye for now).