Alexa, can you please tell me the meaning of life?

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Oh how did we cope before Alexa arrived in our house?

If you haven’t got an Alexa in your household then I’ll explain why she is something you really need to get and then go on, a little later in this column, to reveal my fears for the future of the world if Alexa should ever turn against humanity.

I say Alexa is a she, but it’s actually an it with a female voice that comes from a little black cylinder my wife plugged into the house power supply a few weeks ago.

While I cannot yet say science fiction has truly become science fact – I don’t see flying cars anywhere – Alexa comes pretty close.

If you want to know something, or get her to tell you a joke, listen to the news headlines or play a tune or two you just have to ask.

Well if you speak like me you may have to ask a few times before the silly electronic moo understands you.

She appears to have developed something of a grudge against my son, wee Charlie, who once asked her to play some Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Alexa’s cold as ice response was: “I don’t have any songs by Alabama Joe Monks.”

However, she’s learning all the time and that’s what worries me a wee bit.

Anyone who has seen the 1977 horror Demon Seed would share my concern.

In that horribly dated film, house computer Proteus – voiced by a superbly sinister Robert Vaughan – goes mental and tries to impregnate Julie Christie so he can have a robot/human hybrid sprog to help him take over the world.

“Alexa, can you play some Eric Clapton?”

“There will be no Tears in Heaven for you, pathetic human.”