Alexa Skill Blog Posts

Alexa Skills

January 14, 2019

Framingham MBTA Alexa Skill

One of the most popular Commuter Rail stations is the Framingham MBTA station. Every day hundreds of commuters start their commute from this station.

I created an Alexa Skill to find out when the next train leaves to Boston - based on the current schedule.

This can be useful if you need to take the train at off times - such as on weekends or in the afternoons.

Framingham M B T A

Sample ways to enable the Skill

  • Alexa, open framingham MBTA
  • Alexa, ask framingham MBTA when is the next train
  • Alexa, ask framingham MBTA a train tip

Bonus Tip

For each train, I added a bonus tip. It's a little something interesting about that particular train.

Getting the Skill

Simply search for Framingham MBTA in the Alexa app. If this becomes very popular, I'll add other locations and tips

January 7, 2019

Alexa: Happy Inspirational Quotes

Over the past few years, my quotes page has gotten a fair amount of traffic. I decided to put some of the quotes in a new Alexa Skill.

Enjoy a nice bit of business inspiration whenever you need it.

Alexa Inspirational Quote

Getting the Skill

Simply ask Alexa to Install the Happy Inspirational Quotes, or search for the skill in the Alexa app.

Enable the Skill

There are three ways to run this skill:

  • Alexa, launch happy inspirational quotes
  • Alexa, ask happy inspirational quotes for a quote
  • Alexa, ask happy inspirational quotes to tell me a quote

Check out the online collection - started collecting off/on since 2000. Basically, I look for some quotes that seem unique and worthy of putting on the page.

December 24, 2018

Alexa: Real Audio Sounds

My Real Audio Sounds page has been online since 1997 - when this website launched. It was created as a test to see the streaming capabilities of Real Audio Software. Streaming media online was still new, as much of the home internet usage was still dial-up.

The page has about 155 short audio clips from various commercials to music clips that I had put together over the years. The page hasn't gotten much traffic as Real Audio is a bit of an old technology now. You still need to download Real Audio Codex to play the clip through Quicktime.

Alexa Real Audio Sounds

Now Alexa Enabled

Amazon Alexa seems to be the next hot streaming media technology, so I decided to port over the top twenty popular short clips to be played on Alexa.

Enable 'Real Audio Sounds' and check out some of the classic clips.

Sample ways to run the skill.

  • Alexa, Tell Real Audio Sounds for a Sample Clip.
  • Alexa, Tell Real Audio Sounds for Cape Cod Sound.
  • Alexa, Ask Real Audio Sounds for Help.

If the skill becomes popular, I'll port over more audio clips to the collection.

Try it out, and enjoy!

December 17, 2018

Jingle the Dog Alexa Skill

My daughter likes this time of year, because it's when she takes out Jingle the Dog for some fun story reading. As you read the story, Jingle the Dog will react to some of the words in the story.

A few years ago I put a blog of all the words that Jingle the Dog reacts to. A few people have commented on additionally hidden phrases that they have accidentally found.

New Alexa Skill

Last month I put together an Alexa Skill where you can have Jingle the Dog respond to random phrases. Simply put Jingle next to Alexa, and say the following commands:

  • Alexa, say something to jingle from jingle the dog
  • Alexa, make jingle bark from jingle the dog
  • Alexa, talk to jingle from jingle the dog

Jingle The Dog Alexa

Try it Out!

If you have Jingle the Dog and Amazon Alexa, why not try out the 'Jingle the Dog' skill. If you know other phrases that Jingle add a comment to this post or to the original post and I'll be sure to add it to the Alexa Skill so everyone can enjoy!

December 3, 2018

Random Poll

Recently I created several Alexa Skills that integrates with this website. Over the next few Mondays, I’ll be officially announcing them.

It doesn’t get any more original content than this!

Random Poll Generator Skill

This week skill is based on a classic that I created back in 1996 - Bogus President Poll. My original version contained ...

Check out the old version!

Updated for Alexa

When you run this skill, instead of a long story, you hear a brief sentence of a random presidential poll headline.

Random President Poll

Since the 2020 election is still a long way out, I’ll be updating the candidate names that are likely to run.

Check out the official Alexa page for more details and enable this skill.