This evening, I was demoing different technology around the office — a Google Home, an Echo, and Alexa-enabled device, an old Dropcam, cellular modem, WeMo, etc. I wanted to show how the WeMo would work with the Echo and did a demo command. Alexa responded… “OK, turning off the lights” or something similar.

I didn’t think much of it until I arrived home. Our babysitter was telling us that something strange happened — the lights in our living room had started to dim and then came on again after a minute. Well, it turns out that Alexa didn’t know that I wasn’t at the same location as the Hue lights I had been actuating (I was thinking I was just actuating a WeMo that wasn’t plugged in).

It might make sense for the Alexa Smart Home API to check the IP address of the device that’s being used to actuate it if it’s not sharing the same IP address as the target. Maybe it could flag up a prompt for confirmation?

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