Jeopardy and the Jeopardy Theme Song

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This evening in the kitchen, I was cooking with two little girls roaming around. It could have been a commercial for the Echo or Google Home. We were requesting music or pairing the Echo to my phone to play kids songs. We ended up with “I’m a Little Tea Pot” and it reminded me of the Jeopardy Theme Song. “Alexa, play Jeopardy Theme Song”… and so we did.

Then I wanted to play again. “Alexa, play Jeopardy.” Well well well… that’s when we played a little Jeopardy.

I had played a year ago on the Echo and I thought about the interaction. First, quizzes with the Alexa speech synthesis seem unnatural, even though there seems to be some work done on SSML in adjusting prosody. However, it was still fun to flex the trivia muscle.

My daughter lost patience on the seventh question and started to talk during the response. “Alexa, play Jeopardy theme”. It took a few attempts get the game to exit. Later on, when it sounded like Alexa heard me request “play Jeopardy” vs “play Jeopardy theme”, I heard Alex Trebek chastise me for not finishing my game.

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Alex was not happy with me, despite being a fellow Ottawan.

Playing Jeopardy and playing Jeopardy are two different things and what Alexa didn’t yet understand was that I wanted music rather than a game. This is a little thing it will likely learn over the next few years.

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