Alexa For Dummies
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Alexa has an extensive fun side that you can check out to lighten the mood, entertain your kids (not to mention the kid in you), or relax after a tough day. The fun things to do with Alexa and Amazon Echo are seemingly endless. This article presents ten categories of Alexa tricks, each with ten fun things to do with Amazon Alexa. For the math challenged, that's ten times ten, or one hundred, Easter eggs for you to enjoy.

10 Ways to Ask Alexa to Tell a Joke

For a virtual personal assistant, Alexa certainly has what seems like a real sense of humor. It’s a decidedly corny sense of humor, to be sure. Want proof? Just make any of the following joke requests:
  • “Alexa, make me laugh.”
  • “Alexa, say something funny.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a blooper.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a joke.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a prank.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a dad joke.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a dirty joke.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a knock-knock joke.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a ‘yo mama’ joke.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a [topic] joke.” Alexa will usually come up with a joke related to whatever you substitute for topic, including just about any sport (or the word sport itself), any science subject (or science), and any holiday (or holiday). Two other fruitful joke topics are “Star Wars” and “Star Trek.”

Bonus joke request: “Alexa, tell me an Alexa joke.”

10 Alexa Wordplay Tricks

Programmers and nerds of all persuasions love playing with words, so is it any wonder that Alexa — the creation of coders and other Amazonian nerds — is conversant with many different forms of wordplay? Here are ten to have fun with:
  • “Alexa, tell me a haiku.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a limerick.” (Also: “Alexa, tell me a [topic] limerick.”)
  • “Alexa, tell me an oxymoron.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a palindrome.”
  • “Alexa, tell me some Pig Latin.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a puzzle.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a pun.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a rhyme.” (Also, “Alexa, speak in iambic pentameter.”)
  • “Alexa, tell me a riddle.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a tongue-twister.”

Speaking of tongue-twisters, if you want to hear Alexa twist its virtual tongue around a term that’s a full 45 letters long, ask, “Alexa, what’s the longest word?” The answer, in case you want to follow along, is pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis.

10 Ways to Get Alexa to Sing

Alexa talks a good game, but did you know that it can also sing? It’s true. Sure, Alexa’s singing voice won’t win any Grammys, but it’s pleasant enough, and Alexa’s original songs are often hilarious. Here are ten ways to get Alexa to serenade you:
  • “Alexa, sing me a song.”
  • “Alexa, sing the ABCs.”
  • “Alexa, sing ‘Auld Lang Syne.’”
  • “Alexa, sing in Auto-Tune.”
  • “Alexa, sing a Christmas carol.”
  • “Alexa, sing ‘Happy Birthday.’”
  • “Alexa, sing a love song.”
  • “Alexa, sing the national anthem.”
  • “Alexa, beatbox for me.” (Also: “Alexa, rap for me,” “Alexa, rap for Mom,” or “Alexa, rap for Dad.”)
  • “Alexa, yodel for me.”

You can ask Alexa to sing specific songs, although the results might not be what you expect! For example, try asking Alexa to sing “Itsy Bitsy Spider” or “The Wheels on the Bus.”

10 Oddball Things to Ask Alexa to Do

The tasks you ask Alexa to do are mostly utilitarian: “Set an alarm,” “Play some music,” “Be quiet.” But all work and no play make Alexa a dull virtual personal assistant. To give Alexa something fun to do, try any of the following ten requests:
  • “Alexa, drumroll.”
  • “Alexa, flip a coin.” (Also: “Alexa, heads or tails?,” “Alexa, spin the dreidel,” “Alexa, roll the dice,” “Alexa, roll [number] dice,” “Alexa, roll a [number]-sided die,” or “Alexa, roll [number1] [number2]-sided dice.”)
  • “Alexa, high five.”
  • “Alexa, make me a sandwich.”
  • “Alexa, pick a random [object].” (For example, you can replace object with animal, actor, card, city, color, food, name, number, occupation, or person.)
  • “Alexa, pretend to be a supervillain.” (Also: “Alexa, pretend to be a superhero.”)
  • “Alexa, rock paper scissors.” (Also: “Alexa, rock paper scissors lizard Spock.”)
  • “Alexa, talk like a pirate.” (Also: “Alexa, talk like Yoda,” “Alexa, talk like a Klingon,” “Alexa, moo like a cow,” “Alexa, bark like a dog,” or “Alexa, make animal noises.”)
  • “Alexa, tell me something weird.” (Also: “Alexa, tell me a thought from the cloud,” “Alexa, tell me a fun fact,” “Alexa, tell me a fun fact about [topic],” or “Alexa, tell me a life hack.”)
  • “Alexa, self-destruct.”

10 Funny Questions to Ask Alexa

You can ask Alexa just about anything, and a surprising percentage of the time it will return a legit answer. That’s Alexa’s artificial intelligence at work, but just because AI is serious technology that doesn’t mean all your questions have to be serious, too. Here are ten fun ways to interrogate Alexa:
  • “Alexa, can you do an impression?”
  • “Alexa, can you sneeze?”
  • “Alexa, do you believe in love at first sight?”
  • “Alexa, how much wood could a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could chuck wood?” (Also: “Alexa, how much wood could a woodchuck chuck, if a woodchuck could Chuck Norris?”)
  • “Alexa, how was your day?”
  • “Alexa, what are you thinking about?”
  • “Alexa, what is the meaning of life?”
  • “Alexa, what should I wear today?”
  • “Alexa, where is Chuck Norris?”
  • “Alexa, why did the chicken cross the road?”

10 Ways to Get Alexa to Tell a Story

Alexa comes with a collection of stories and poems, which can be just the thing to hear on a lazy or cold night. Use any of the following voice commands to hear a performance by Alexa, The Storyteller:
  • “Alexa, tell me a story.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a funny story.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a [topic] story.” (For example, you can replace topic with bedtime, friendship, love, or scary.)
  • “Alexa, tell me your [title] story.” (For example, you can replace title with Batter Up, Measure Twice, Puppy Love, Sea Time, or Tango Night.)
  • “Alexa, tell me a tale.”
  • “Alexa, what’s your favorite story?”
  • “Alexa, tell me a poem.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a bad poem.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a ‘roses are red’ poem.”
  • “Alexa, tell me a [topic] poem.”

10 Ways to Get Personal with Alexa

Alexa sounds friendly enough, but how much do you really know about your cloud-based personal assistant? Do you know its birthday or where it lives? I didn’t think so. Here are ten questions you can ask to get to know Alexa a little better:
  • “Alexa, are you a robot?” (Also: “Alexa, are you Skynet?”)
  • “Alexa, do you have a last name?”
  • “Alexa, do you have pets?”
  • “Alexa, how much do you weigh?”
  • “Alexa, how tall are you?”
  • “Alexa, what are you wearing?”
  • “Alexa, what is your favorite [object]?” (For example, you can replace object with book, color, food, sport, and so on.)
  • “Alexa, when is your birthday?”
  • “Alexa, where did you grow up?”
  • “Alexa, where do you live?”

10 Movie Easter Eggs

In the software world, an Easter egg is a whimsical program feature that’s hidden by default and must be discovered. Alexa, you’ll be delighted to know, contains hundreds of Easter eggs. You can get a random one using either of these commands:
  • “Alexa, give me an Easter egg.”
  • “Alexa, give me a hard-boiled Easter egg.”
For a more targeted Easter egg hunt, you can try specific topics such as TV and music, which I discuss in the next sections. Movies are another great source for Alexa Easter eggs. There are dozens, perhaps even hundreds, so consider the following ten to be a mere appetizer:
  • “Alexa, open the pod bay doors.” (2001: A Space Odyssey)
  • “Alexa, who’s on first?” (Abbot and Costello)
  • “Alexa, release the Kraken!” (Clash of the Titans)
  • “Alexa, klattu barada nikto.” (The Day the Earth Stood Still)
  • “Alexa, E.T. phone home.” (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial)
  • “Alexa, define supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” (Mary Poppins)
  • “Alexa, are we in the Matrix?” (The Matrix)
  • “Alexa, what is my mission?” (Mission: Impossible)
  • “Alexa, what is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail)
  • “Alexa, what is the Jedi code?” (Star Wars)

10 TV Easter Eggs

Alexa doesn’t have a ton of TV Easter eggs, but here are a few to whet your whistle:
  • “Alexa, what is your cunning plan?” (Blackadder)
  • “Alexa, who shot JR?” (Dallas)
  • “Alexa, don’t mention the war.” (Fawlty Towers)
  • “Alexa, Winter is coming.” (Game of Thrones)
  • “Alexa, who loves orange soda?” (Kenan & Kel)
  • “Alexa, who loves ya baby?” (Kojak)
  • “Alexa, this is a dead parrot.” (Monty Python)
  • “Alexa, more cowbell.” (Saturday Night Live)
  • “Alexa, what is the Prime Directive?” (Star Trek)
  • “Alexa, where’s the beef?” (Wendy’s commercial)

10 Music Easter Eggs

Music is one of Alexa’s strong suits, so you won’t be surprised to hear that it has dozens of music-related Easter eggs waiting to be discovered. Here are ten to get you started:
  • “Alexa, badger badger badger badger badger.” (“The Badger Song”)
  • “Alexa, how many roads must a man walk down?” (“Blowin’ in the Wind” by Bob Dylan)
  • “Alexa, do you know the way to San Jose?” (“Do You Know the Way to San Jose?” by Dionne Warwick)
  • “Alexa, I shot a man in Reno.” (“Folsom Prison Blues” by Johnny Cash)
  • “Alexa, what does the fox say?” (“The Fox” by Ylvis)
  • “Alexa, hello it’s me.” (“Hello” by Adele)
  • “Alexa, how much is that doggie in the window?” (“How Much Is That Doggie in the Window?” by Patti Page)
  • “Alexa, have you heard that the bird is the word?” (“Surfin’ Bird” by The Trashmen)
  • “Alexa, who is the Walrus?” (“The Walrus” by The Beatles)
  • “Alexa, who let the dogs out?” (“Who Let The Dogs Out” by Baha Men)

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book author:

Paul McFedries is a technical writer who has been authoring computer books since 1991 and has over 100 books to his credit. These books include Alexa For Dummies, Amazon Fire TV For Dummies, and Cord Cutting For Dummies. You can visit Paul on the web at

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