Some changes are coming to Amazon’s Alexa, including giving her a memory upgrade. As CNET points out, the voice assistant can now remember information, making her as useful as a human assistant when it comes to storing away details like birthdays, clothing sizes, and more.
Alexa previously allowed you to make shopping and to-do lists, but now the system will remember whatever arbitrary information you throw at it by using the command "remember." You can say, "Alexa, remember that my sister is a size medium," or "Alexa, remember that my boss's wife's name is Tammy," or "Alexa, remember that the recipe for cold brew coffee is 8 ounces of ground beans, 36 ounces of water." CNET even recommends using it to keep track of where you’ve put things, like "Alexa, remember that I put the tape measure in the craft box."
You can call upon Alexa to regurgitate that information later when you need it—say, when you're in the kitchen trying to make cold brew, or rummaging around trying to figure out where you put the tape measure.
Even if you're not home, the commands you give your Alexa device are stored in the Amazon Alexa app, so you could always scroll through your history if you really need to remember Tammy's name on the fly. Meanwhile, if you don't want your Echo to store the fact that you have been constantly asking it when your spouse's birthday is, you can always go through your history on the mobile app and delete those entries.
The new feature is just one of many Alexa hacks that can personalize your device, making it more useful to you. It can also give you customized traffic updates, tailor its daily news briefing to the publications you like to hear from, and re-order your favorite pizza, among other tasks. According to an Amazon blog post from the company's Alexa Machine Learning department, Alexa will get even more customizable in the future. The memory function is "first of many launches this year that will make Alexa more personalized."