The weather report looks grim. A major snowstorm is headed for your area…but perhaps it’ll just end up being a light dusting. (“Hey, these things change course," the same meteorologists who invented the term bomb cyclone will shrug.)
For parents, uncertainty over the next morning’s possible school cancellations means the difference between planning for a day of business as usual (work, errands, interaction with other adults) and scrambling to entertain small, stir-crazy, permanently pajama’d children for 12 straight hours without resorting to three back-to-back screenings of Captain Underpants.
Well, get ready, grown-ups. Alexa is about to knock your two pairs of fleece socks off.
Simply tell “her” your zip code and she will calculate, based on past weather data, the likelihood of your school being closed the next day—down to the percentage point.
How exactly? She uses something called the “Dark Sky API and a Support Vector Machine” to analyze historical weather patterns and predict the future. But if she can buy you enough time to get to the store to stock up on milk, cookie dough, temporary tattoos and finger paint, well, that’s all the support vector you’ll need.