back to article Church of England will commune with God for you via Amazon's Echo

Technology worship has ascended to a higher spiritual plane with the Church of England now offering the faithful daily voice-activated prayers from Amazon's smart home kit, Echo. Using the new Alexa "skill", believers can ask the CoE for prayers, explanations of the Christian faith and location-based information about local …

LDS
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Joke

So we're back to worship...

... female gods?

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Re: So we're back to worship...

Did you just assume the gender of an entity?

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Re: So we're back to worship...

I think there may have been a divine revelation involved.

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LDS
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"Did you just assume the gender of an entity?"

As long as they have female names and female voices...

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Paris Hilton

Re: So we're back to worship...

So we're back to worship...

... female gods?

I was under the impression many already did.

Paris: Not a very omnipotent female god - but possibly good for bacanals. (at the very least the catering should be a breeze).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: So we're back to worship...

The Discworld had many female gods.

"Gods exist in potentia in numbers uncountable, but the moment an event of any note occurs – say, two snails happening to cross at a single point – a god becomes tied to it and begins to manifest in the physical world."

Possibly Alexa's sister is Anoia.

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Re: So we're back to worship...

"Alexa, provide me with a coherent timeline of events of the Day of Resurrection, which accurately resolves all of the reports recounted in the gospels, Acts and the Pauline epistles."

"Alexa?"

"Alexa?"

I think she's blown a gasket.

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Re: So we're back to worship...

Wonder what happens when you say "Alexa, ask the Church of England about Jeremy Dowling"

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Happy

"The church also intends to offer the function on Google Pray."

FTFY

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I initially misread the original as Google Pay. Internet of Indulgences?

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Anonymous Coward

"I initially misread the original as Google Pay."

According to the BBC article.

"In March the Church announced it was to begin taking contactless payments for services such as weddings and christenings at more than over 16,000 churches - a move it said should appeal to young people who often did not carry cash."

Sounds like passing the begging bowl round people obliged by social convention to attend "hatched" and "matched" services. Seems like they are leaving "dispatched" for later.

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And presumably it should also be the Apple HomeGod...

Incidentally, good luck with the Google version - your most likely responses are going to be "I don't understand 'God'", "God is not available in your area right now" or "You need to configure a default God provider".

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Incidentally, good luck with the Google version - your most likely responses are going to be "I don't understand 'God'", "God is not available in your area right now" or "You need to configure a default God provider".

"The Google Omniscience Department will get back to you shortly."

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MORE than OVER 16,000 churches, eh?

That's rather a lot of churches.

I would imagine.

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The function will also help users answer the big questions

I expect the answer to be 42.

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42

Sorry, that's a different cult.

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Re: 42

A really odd cult, whose main tenant is ignoring the fact that HHGTTG is awful.

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Re: 42

"whose main tenant is ignoring the fact that HHGTTG is awful."

BLASPHEMY!!!!! STONE THE HERETIC!!!!

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Re: 42

Okay, who though that...

There's always one isn't there.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 42

The cult has a tenant - is he paying rent? Or did you mean tenet?

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Thumb Up

Re: 42

NO ONE IS TO THROW ANY STONES

until I blow this whistle.

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Alien

Re: 42

A really odd cult, whose main tenant is ignoring the fact that HHGTTG is awful.

You are Marvin, and I claim my five ningis.

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Re: 42

A really odd cult, whose main tenant is ignoring the fact that HHGTTG is awful.

You are Marvin, and I claim my five ningis.

I hope you have some spare subspace to store the five mile long triangular rubber coins then.

Should have asked for eight ningis, then you'd have one pu.

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Coat

Re: 42

"NO ONE IS TO THROW ANY STONES

until I blow this whistle."

Are there any women here?

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Re: 42

"HHGTTG is awful"

Leave him to his Vogon poetry.

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Re: 42

@wolfetone, don't worry, we are all without sin.

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Re: 42

It think in this case we are looking at the Electric Monk from Dirk Gently

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Re: 42

electric monkey had been my first thought as well

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Re: 42

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI2oS2hoL0k

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Alexa, is there a God?

Yes, now there is a God

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Angel

"Alexa, is there a God?

"Yes, now there is a God"

Siri: "Ahem..."

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Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

If I remember correctly, there was a very very short story by Isaac Asimov with that plot.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

Asimov story

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

"Siri: "Ahem..."

They need a few miracles attributing to their powers before they will gain their major deity status. Any bets on the first case that makes the claim? A cure for cancer; the blind seeing; the lame walking; the dead resurrected; winning a lottery?

I gave my neighbour some left-over Halloween sweets for her kids. Her religion prevented her kids from doing "Trick or Treat". She said that day she had had to make a choice between milk or sweets. So she said that her god had answered her prayers for sweets for the kids. She believes that her god makes my garden bloom with flowers.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

She believes that her god makes my garden bloom with flowers.

I wish He'd come round & do some weeding in mine, then.

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Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

"A cure for cancer; the blind seeing; the lame walking; the dead resurrected; winning a lottery?"

We already got bionic ears, eyes, and limbs, and people winning lotteries happens all the time. Recently actors have been acting in movies after they die, and see my previous post in another thread about Micheal Jackson touring Australia after his death. I guess that leaves curing cancer?

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Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

She believes that her god makes my garden bloom with flowers.

Many years and jobs ago one of our junior programmers was a born again Christian, but management had to tell him to tone it down a bit because everyone round him got sick of him thanking God by praying out loud every time his code compiled. He wasn't that bad a programmer.

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Childcatcher

Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

So we have an updated version of using water to turn prayer wheels. Re Siri, Alexa et al, remember that you should not cross the streams.

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Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

him thanking God by praying out loud every time his code compiled.

Almost but not quite, I've often been presented with code and thought 'it's a miracle this compiled at all'.

Most programmers do their praying while compilation is in progress though, not after. After, all bets off, all promised forgotten and it's off to the pub to indulge in some sin*

* Or at least as close as degrees of afflicted nerdy-types can come to their interpretation of sin*

* gotos instead of procedures, or procedures instead of functions (presumably). & beer/ale

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Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

"If I remember correctly, there was a very very short story by Isaac Asimov with that plot."

That would be 'Answer' by Frederic Brown, the undisputed king of the vignette.

Also rightly famous for his shortest SF/Horror story in the world:

"The last man on Earth sat alone in a room. There was a knock at the door..."

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Facepalm

Re: "Alexa, is there a God?

"She said that day she had had to make a choice between milk or sweets."

Sounds like she needs to look at her choice of god...

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So one invisible friend will now talk to another invisible friend?

Makes total sense.

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SVV
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Somewhat baffling

It's not surprising that they're already comfortable asking a pretend sentient entity to solve their problems for them, but why they now need to ask a small plastic device for help instead of going directly to the biig numero uno surely raises serious theological questions?

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Re: Somewhat baffling

"...surely raises serious theological questions?"

Like does God work in binary or trinary?

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Re: Somewhat baffling

Qubits obviously - mysterious ways and all that...

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Re: Somewhat baffling

I only discovered this week that my Fire HD8 now had Alexa switched on in a recent update. The way I found out was when I held down the home for too long when distracted by something else. As it was in a dark room and quite late at night I almost leapt out of my skin. However I was reassured by the voice message that the bloody thing couldn't connect to amazon (I have a no root firewall taking care of that). Even if it could connect I physically disabled the built in microphone when I got the tablet, so good luck understanding what I'm saying. I turned on parental controls after that to disable Alexa from coming back.

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Devil

Re: Somewhat baffling

That would be an ecumenical question...

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Boffin

Re: Somewhat baffling

Like does God work in binary or trinary?

As the Blessed Knuth said(*), in some ways the most efficient base for a computer would be e, which would mean even computers would work in a mysterious way(**).

(*) Somewhere in TAoCP IIRC.

(**) Although floating point would automatically be supported by the architecture.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Somewhat baffling

"Although floating point would automatically be supported by the architecture."

Will it have infinite precision?

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Won't appear on Apple Home since the Apple God refuses to allow anything but unconditional, exclusive worshipping and the slightest deviation means you'll be cast in the Windows of Hell !!!

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