Amazon’s announcement of Echo last week came as a surprise to many. Think Siri or Cortana, except it’s not just another app on a device. Instead it comes in its own standalone hardware: a cylindrical audio interface, i.e. a speaker with seven embedded microphones which is always listening, ready to respond when you use a keyword to awaken it.
If that sounds to you like bugging your own house so that a multinational corporation can gather data about you, that’s probably the same reaction which prompted this parody video:
“I’m a talking cylinder. I exist only for companionship and utility. My existence is utterly meaningless”
Bonus: The Hal 9000 version.