Yahoo’s new chatbot Captain will help chart a course for your busy life

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Its sale price to Verizon may be going down, but it looks like Yahoo’s productivity is picking up — and it wants to help you with yours, too. Joining the ever-growing ranks of Yahoo’s bots is Captain, described as “a bot assistant that helps manage lists and reminders for you and your family via text message.” Effectively serving as your imaginary best friend, or rather, your supremely organized imaginary best friend, Captain promises to streamline communication among friends and family members, helping you share activities, set reminders, and even update a master shopping list.

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To use the bot, simply text it something you can’t let yourself forget, like picking up your kids from dance practice on Friday night. Out of toilet paper? Remind yourself to grab some on your next trip to the store. And then, when you find yourself out and about, just text Captain and ask what you need to do for the day. Don’t worry, the bot knows.

Using Captain is about as straightforward a process as you can imagine. Simply text “Hi” to 773-786 and start chatting with your new personal assistant. Captain will respond immediately with setup instructions (though Sprint customers will need to unblock shortened links in order to get Captain to work). And while the bot is free to use, users should keep their data plans in mind — if you’re still paying for texts, be aware that Captain may eat some of those up.

If all that sounds peachy, there’s plenty that you can teach Captain to do. You can see a list of all the ways you can interact with Captain here, and start chatting up a storm with the one contact you know will always text you back.

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