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As Amazon’s Alexa Passes 100 Million Units Sold, It Will Now Be Always-On And Always Recording And Storing All Conversations In Your Home

Amazon’s patent application for an always-on feature for Alexa, its popular voice-activated personal assistant, has raised a lot of concern.

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Amazon's Alexa Is Always Listening and Recording Your Conversations
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Amazon’s patent application for an always-on feature for Alexa, its popular voice-activated personal assistant, has raised a lot of concern.

Understanding of Bible prophecy is a lot like driving into a smog-filled city like Los Angeles, where I lived for a time before getting saved back in the last 1980’s. When you view LA from a distance, it is very obvious that the whole city is ringed with a dark, brownish-gray layer of smog. But as you get closer, a funny thing happens. That same smog that was crystal-clear from a distance virtually disappears as you drive into it, and once inside, is nearly invisible. So it is with Bible prophecy as it gets closer to the time of its fulfillment.

“And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.” Revelation 13:11,13-18 (KJV)

When I got saved and started doing Bible study, prophecy in particular, it seemed to me that nearly all of the Church was acutely aware of things like the coming Mark of the Beast. Writers like Hal Lindsey wrote and warned against the creep of technology, as did many movies of the time. We wondered would our televisions start spying on us, and really had a great awareness of things. Not so in 2019. In our day, billions of us wear and carrying global tracking devices which we call our mobile devices, and millions of us have put spy gear like Alexa and Google into our homes. Gone is the nervousness and apprehension of the One World Government and the Mark of the Beast. Now we openly embrace these things. And yes, our televisions are spying on us.

The reason why this is happening is because in the 28 years since I got saved, we are now right on the very edge of Bible prophecy and its fulfillment. The Pretribulation Rapture of the Church, the event that will kickoff the end times officially, remains as of this writing only a kitten’s whisker away from taking place. An unsaved world is right now wholeheartedly embracing these end times tracking devices, just as they will fervently adopt the Mark of the Beast in the days when Antichrist shall rise and rule. Getting all that, Alexa?

To the computers that now surround us, speech is just another form of data.

FROM BLOOMBERG: “If you’re already freaked out by the privacy implications of smart speakers like Amazon’s Echo,” says Gizmodo, “we have some bad news.” A headline in ScienceAlert is even more direct: “Newly Released Amazon Patent Shows Just How Much Creepier Alexa Can Get.” You get the idea.

But the anxiety is much ado about nothing. An Alexa that’s always listening will likely prove more useful than an Alexa that isn’t; and, in any case, always-on devices are certainly our future.

As of January 2019, Amazon had sold more than 100 million devices that include Alexa. That number is certainly dwarfed by the billions of devices that include Siri and Google Assistant. But the difference is, those features come bundled with your smartphone, which has many other uses. When you purchase an Alexa device, you are choosing to invite Amazon into your home to listen to you.

Even those who have no interest in obtaining an Alexa-linked device know how the thing works, if only from Amazon’s flood of television commercials. You say “Alexa, what’s today’s weather?” — and it tells you. Whenever Alexa hears its “wake word,”  the software assumes that the user wants its attention. Thus Alexa “wakes,” listens and processes the words that follow as a command.

The difficulty arises because, in the words of the patent application, a wake word “may not always precede a spoken command, and may sometimes be included in the middle of a spoken command.” The application gives an example: “Play ‘Mother’s Little Helper’ by the Rolling Stones.” As currently configured, the system will respond if the user prefaces the request with “Alexa” (that is, “Alexa, play ‘Mother’s Little Helper’”) but not if the wake word comes at the end (that is, “Play ‘Mother’s Little Helper,’ Alexa”).

Put otherwise, Alexa as currently configured does not match the way people speak. The user must structure each command around a relatively formal grammar. The invention described in the patent application would deformalize the means for addressing the device, thus enabling Alexa to fit more easily and naturally into everyday life.

Here’s Amazon’s solution: Alexa already stores what it hears in a buffer. Under the new configuration, according to the application, once Alexa detects a wake word, “the device will go backwards through the audio in the buffer to determine the start of the utterance that includes the wakeword.” After finding what it scores as the most likely start of the command, Alexa will perform a similar calculation to find the end. The command will then be processed exactly like one that was preceded by the wake word.

It all makes a great deal of sense. Why then the concern? It seems to me that there are two potential issues.

One is a worry about what happens to the information from the audio buffer. Alexa currently retains recordings for a period of time, helping it model the user’s needs and wants. This feature, which can be partially disabled, has already caused privacy problems. Courts have issued subpoenas for Alexa recordings. And as Bloomberg News has reported, human beings at Amazon already listen to much of what Alexa hears, in an effort to improve the algorithm. But no always-on feature was necessary for those recordings to survive.

The second concern might be that an Alexa which listens more closely, responding to natural language commands, will soon become an Alexa that fades into the background. The relative formality with which the device must be addressed serves as a reminder that we are addressing just that — a device. The more casually we can speak, the more casual we will likely be about using it. We might, quite literally, forget that Alexa is there. Only the consumer can decide whether that is a feature or a bug.

Amazon says that it has no current plan to change the way Alexa listens, but bear in mind that the always-on feature can be implemented whether or not it is ever patented. In other words, if the notion of a device that is always awake worries you, the fact that a patent application has been filed shouldn’t cause you to worry more. Any device that listens to you can already be made always-on. (Including, by the way, your smartphone.)

We accept that our laptops and smart televisions are recording the choices we make and sending them we know not where. The only reason we imagine that our spoken words are safe is that speech is an older, more instinctive technology. We still think of speech as special, a distinctively human function, and when we are in spaces we consider private, we consider our voice as something heard only by our most intimate and trusted acquaintances.

But to the computers that now surround us, speech is just another form of data. The various voice-commanded devices of today, whether in our homes, smartphones or cars, work just like keyboards or touchscreens. The only difference is that the human input is a voice. And the only way they can get that input is to listen for it.

So let’s calm down. Yes, it can be fun to imagine a future in which our homes are entirely connected and yet we’re able to keep private everything we want to keep private. But that ship sailed long before Amazon decided to seek a patent on a minor and welcome change to Alexa. READ MORE

Amazon Alexa Echo Recorded Conversation And Then Sent To Contact

A woman in Portland, Oregon, says her Amazon Echo secretly recorded her conversation and sent the recording to a contact on her husband’s phone. Amazon said it was the result of an “unlikely” series of events.

Amazon workers reportedly listening to your conversations with Alexa

ROBO Global CIO Bill Studebaker discusses the report that thousands of Amazon employees are listening to people’s conversations with Alexa.

Now The End Begins is your front line defense against the rising tide of darkness in the last days before the Rapture of the Church

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“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13 (KJV)

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End Times

Just In Time For Saturnalia, Umm, I Mean Christmas, It’s The Holy Spirit Talking Board For You To Have A ‘Guaranteed Demon-Free’ Séance With Jesus

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The Holy Spirit Board with its ‘Magic Cross planchette with metallic mirrored finish’ is straight from the pit of Hell.

I really wish this article today on the Holy Spirit Board was something from the Babylon Bee, but sadly, it is not. It’s hard to say what’s more demonic, the original Ouija board with its satanic gothic styling cues, or this one that presents Jesus in a mocking way, and drags the Holy Spirit into just for fun. The worst part is the number of Laodicean Christian churches that have already ordered it and are planning to have Fall Festival family fun nights. On sale at Amazon right now.

“Abstain from all appearance of evil.” 1 Thessalonians 5:22 (KJB)

This straight from the boardroom of Hell board game tells you how you can “communicate directly with Jesus Christ!” and “get all the answers straight from the man himself!”. Just for fun it comes complete with something called a ‘Magic Cross planchette’ shaped, of course, not like the biblical cross that the Romans crucified Jesus on, but styled after the Babylonian cross dating back to the rule of everyone’s favorite type of Antichrist, King Nebuchadnezzar.

This is wickedness, this is evil, and this is something that no Christian, no matter how backslidden, should have anything to do with. There is a website called ChurchLeaders.com, and they say that they are ‘dedicated to resourcing, informing, and connecting a community of church leaders for greater Kingdom impact worldwide.’ Well, they wrote a whole article on the Holy Spirit Board, including links to videos from the game manufacturer, and never once spoke a single word against it. Why not? This is where we are folks, on Day 976 of 15 Days To Flatten The Curve.

Stay From Away From The Holy Spirit Board

Now The End Begins is your front line defense against the rising tide of darkness in the last Days before the Rapture of the Church

When you contribute to this fundraising effort, you are helping us to do what the Lord called us to do. The money you send in goes primarily to the overall daily operations of this site. When people ask for Bibles, we send them out at no charge. When people write in and say how much they would like gospel tracts but cannot afford them, we send them a box at no cost to them for either the tracts or the shipping, no matter where they are in the world. We have a Gospel Billboard program. We are now broadcasting Bible studies, Podcasts and a Sunday Service 5 times a week, thanks to your generous donations. All this is possible because YOU pray for us, YOU support us, and YOU give so we can continue growing.

But whatever you do, don’t do nothing. Time is short and we need your help right now. The Lord has given us an open door with a tremendous ‘course’ for us to fulfill that will create an excellent experience at the Judgement Seat of Christ. Please pray for our efforts, and if the Lord leads you to donate, be as generous as possible. The war is REAL, the battle HOT and the time is SHORTTO THE FIGHT!!!

“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13 (KJB)

“Thank you very much!” – Geoffrey, editor-in-chief, NTEB

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End Times

Senate Republicans Side With Democrats To Help Pass The ‘Respect For Marriage Act’ That Forces States To Recognize Same-Sex Marriages

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Twelve Senate Republicans voted with Democrats on Wednesday for the far-left ‘Respect for Marriage Act,’ which is reportedly designed to provide federal protections for same-sex and interracial marriages.

It’s one thing to get hyped up on the marketing of political parties, like the ‘Red Wave’ that wasn’t, and it’s another thing completely to wake up the next morning and face the grim reality that nothing has changed. Here we are after the Midterms, and what do we see? Senate Republicans siding with Democrats to pass the ‘Respect For Marriage Act’ that protects same-sex marriage. Yay!!! Make America Great Again!! Umm, no. America’s fate has been signed, sealed and about to be delivered. That ‘red wave’ you were expecting is actually going to be fire and blood coming down from God out of Heaven in judgement on this lost nation we live in.

Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.” Luke 17:28,29 (KJB)

Just imagine for a moment that Donald Trump, who has just declared his candidacy for the 2024 presidential race, wins in a landslide. Does that make America great again? No, it does not and it will not. If the ‘Respect For Marriage Act’ came across President Trump’s desk, he would absolutely sign it. How do I know that? Because in 2016 he courted the LGBTQIA+ vote like any other politician. An America that was ‘great again’ would be against those things because God is against those things. Sorry to burst your bubble, kiddies, but it’s time someone told you the truth.

12 Senate Republicans Vote With Democrats for Far-Left ‘Respect for Marriage Act’

FROM BREITBART NEWS: Lawmakers voted for the measure 62-37 after a bipartisan group of senators made changes to the bill to include a clause about religious liberty. With the amendment agreed upon, the bill will go back to the House before going to President Joe Biden. The White House has expressed support for the measure.

The 12 Republicans who voted for the bill include Sens. Roy Blunt (R-MO), Richard Burr (R-NC), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Susan Collins (R-ME), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Rob Portman (R-OH), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Todd Young (R-IN).

The Respect for Marriage Act (RFMA) was introduced following the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, due to Democrats’ unfounded concerns that the Supreme Court could use the Dobbs decision to overrule the Court’s Obergefell gay marriage decisionThe measure passed the House in July with the help of 47 Republicans, but Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) agreed to postpone a vote until after the midterms so that lawmakers from both sides of the aisle could attempt to address religious liberty concerns.

RFMA would repeal the Clinton-era Defense of Marriage Act and would require the federal government to recognize any marriage that was “valid in the place where entered into.” The bill would also require every state to recognize every same-sex marriage that “is valid in the State where the marriage was entered into.”

As a report from Slate noted, the bill “does not go as far as Obergefell. In that decision, the Supreme Court directed every state to license same-sex marriages—that is, to issue a marriage certificate to same-sex couples. The RFMA does not codify this component of Obergefell.” According to the report:

So the RFMA does not force Texas to issue a marriage certificate to a same-sex couple. But it does force Texas to recognize a marriage certificate issued to a same-sex couple by New Mexico. In a post-Obergefell world, a same-sex couple in Texas could drive to New Mexico, obtain a certificate, and force Texas to respect their marriage like any other.

The bill does have a “private right of action” clause, which would allow “any person who is harmed by a violation of subsection (b)…[to] bring a civil action in the appropriate district court of the United States against the person who violated such a subsection for declaratory and injunctive relief.” The law would also allow an attorney general to bring civil action against any person who violates the law.  READ MORE

Republicans Help Pass ‘Respect For Marriage Act’ In Senate

Now The End Begins is your front line defense against the rising tide of darkness in the last Days before the Rapture of the Church

When you contribute to this fundraising effort, you are helping us to do what the Lord called us to do. The money you send in goes primarily to the overall daily operations of this site. When people ask for Bibles, we send them out at no charge. When people write in and say how much they would like gospel tracts but cannot afford them, we send them a box at no cost to them for either the tracts or the shipping, no matter where they are in the world. We have a Gospel Billboard program. We are now broadcasting Bible studies, Podcasts and a Sunday Service 5 times a week, thanks to your generous donations. All this is possible because YOU pray for us, YOU support us, and YOU give so we can continue growing.

But whatever you do, don’t do nothing. Time is short and we need your help right now. The Lord has given us an open door with a tremendous ‘course’ for us to fulfill that will create an excellent experience at the Judgement Seat of Christ. Please pray for our efforts, and if the Lord leads you to donate, be as generous as possible. The war is REAL, the battle HOT and the time is SHORTTO THE FIGHT!!!

“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13 (KJB)

“Thank you very much!” – Geoffrey, editor-in-chief, NTEB

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End Times

End Times Milestone For Miss America Pageant Organization As Biological Man Brían Nguyen Is Crowned ‘Miss Greater Derry 2023’ In New Hampshire

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First Biological Male Brían Nguyen Wins ‘Miss Greater Derry,’ A Beauty Pageant Held By The Miss America Organization

Since NTEB started back in 2009, we have warned you over and over again that the LGBTQIA+ Movement was a radical, militaristic movement planning to erase gender lines, and recruit children through Public School indoctrination programs. In the early days, people would write to us, mockingly deriding our assessment of this situation, calling us ‘conspiracy theory nuts’. However starting in 2020, those emails have since ceased, and now people write to us weeping over what America has become.

“Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.” Genesis 5:2 (KJB)

For the record, there are only two genders, three if you count situations where birth defects will produce a person caught in the middle, but obviously that is not another gender. It is a sobering thought to realize that that rainbow flag they march under is actually a battle flag of a people prepared for war, isn’t it? When we started in 2009, approximately 2.3% of Americans identified as LGBTQ, in 2022 that has risen to almost 8%! What could account for a near 300% increase? Recruitment of school children at every level, starting at 3-years old and all the way up to high school. We warned you this was coming, we pleaded with you to stand up and stand against this rising tide of darkness, but sadly you did not. The ‘Red Wave’ never arrived last Tuesday, but the Rainbow Wave is washing over America, drowning this nation and dragging it to the bottom of the sea. What do the Churches have to say about it?  All I hear is *crickets*, lukewarm, Laodicean crickets cowering behind the 4 walls of the church.

So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:16 (KJB)

Why is there no outrage as biological male is awarded local Miss America crown, why are the churches silent?

FROM EVIE MAGAZINE: Brían Nguyen became the first transgender to win a title under the Miss America Organization. He was named Miss Greater Derry 2023, landing him a crown and scholarship, as announced this past Sunday. The Miss Greater Derry Scholarship Program provides scholarships to “young women” between the ages of 17 and 24.

“My name is Brían Nguyen, I am 19 years old, and I am currently a freshman at Nashua Community College majoring in Business Management,” writes Nguyen on Instagram. The teen also mentions their initiative titled, “#QueensAreEverywhere.” “This is a media movement that helps the next generation develop self-confidence, realize their potential, and become the leaders of their destiny,” Nguyen explains.

 

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A post shared by Brían Nguyen (@missgreaterderrynh)

Reactions from social media users are mixed, and some women believe that Nguyen’s win was a reflection of “internalized misogyny.” “Y’all know how the Left likes to talk about internalized misogyny?” asks @dess_ri , “This is what it ACTUALLY looks like.”

“Yes Miss America will no longer be about women. Men want to make us irrelevant,” comments @cturiano1969.

Just this week, the U.S. Court announced that Miss United States of America LLC cannot be forced to include transgenders as contestants since it would obstruct the organization’s ability to express the “ideal vision of American womanhood.” According to the ruling, they should be allowed to enforce their “natural born female rule” because the First Amendment enables them to do so.

The conclusion came after a lawsuit was filed by a transwoman named Anita Green. “I believe United States of America Miss is on the wrong side of history for choosing to actively discriminate against transgender people, but the road to creating meaningful change has always been a long and bumpy one,” Green said. “Transgender women are women. My message has always been consistent and my message is this: every person has beauty.” READ MORE

Now The End Begins is your front line defense against the rising tide of darkness in the last Days before the Rapture of the Church

When you contribute to this fundraising effort, you are helping us to do what the Lord called us to do. The money you send in goes primarily to the overall daily operations of this site. When people ask for Bibles, we send them out at no charge. When people write in and say how much they would like gospel tracts but cannot afford them, we send them a box at no cost to them for either the tracts or the shipping, no matter where they are in the world. We have a Gospel Billboard program. We are now broadcasting Bible studies, Podcasts and a Sunday Service 5 times a week, thanks to your generous donations. All this is possible because YOU pray for us, YOU support us, and YOU give so we can continue growing.

But whatever you do, don’t do nothing. Time is short and we need your help right now. The Lord has given us an open door with a tremendous ‘course’ for us to fulfill that will create an excellent experience at the Judgement Seat of Christ. Please pray for our efforts, and if the Lord leads you to donate, be as generous as possible. The war is REAL, the battle HOT and the time is SHORTTO THE FIGHT!!!

“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” Titus 2:13 (KJB)

“Thank you very much!” – Geoffrey, editor-in-chief, NTEB

Continue Reading

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