Siri

Siri is the intelligent personal assistant that helps you get things done just by asking. It allows you to use your voice to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls, and more.

The application uses natural language processing to answer questions, make recommendations, and perform actions by delegating requests to an expanding set of web services.  Siri's adaptabilty to the user's  individual preferences over time and personalizes results, as well as accomplishing tasks such as making dinner reservations and reserving a cab has made it quite popular.

 Siri

Luke Peters demonstrates Siri, an application which uses voice recognition and detection on the iPhone 4S, outside the Apple store in Covent Garden, London. Reuters

The iOS app is the first public product by its makers, who are focused on artificial intelligence applications.

Siri was acquired by Apple Inc on 28 April, 2010. Before Apple's purchase, Siri had announced that their software would soon be available for BlackBerry and for Android-powered phones, but all development efforts for non-Apple platforms were cancelled after Apple's purchase of Siri.

On 4 October, 2011 it was announced that Siri will be included with the iPhone 4S. The new version of Siri is integrated into iOS, and offers conversational interaction with many applications, including reminders, weather, stocks, messaging, email, calendar, contacts, notes, music, clocks, web browser, Wolfram Alpha, and maps.

Siri was founded in December 2007 by Dag Kittlaus (CEO), Adam Cheyer (VP Engineering), and Tom Gruber (CTO/VP Design), together with Norman Winarsky from SRI International's venture group.

The Apple's Siri voice-driven personal assistant for the iPhone 4s is both useful and entertaining, likely to be a big hit. With a robotic voice that replies to your questions, Siri gives some funny answers. And that’s turning out to be one of the things that is helping to spread awareness of the main feature of the iPhone 4S to the larger audience of possible iPhone customers. Siri also makes a pretty good digital babysitter.

Venturebeat lists some dialogue between some kids and Siri:

Question: You’re a poop.
Siri: I guess you’re not happy

Q: Not at all
Siri: Sorry. I don’t understand. not at all.

Q: Find Kona’s pet food.
Siri: I found 15 pet stores. Thirteen of them are fairly close to you.

Q: Happy birthday Siri.
Siri: It’s my birthday?

Q: What is the tallest mountain in the US?
Siri: Mount Mckinley.

Q: Who is the tallest person in the world.
Siri: Checking on that for you. Do you want me to search the web for you?

Q: What are you?
Siri: I’m just a humble virtual assistant.

Q: You’re weird.
Siri: If you insist.

Q: What are you doing?
Siri: Waiting for something to do.

Q: You’re cool.
Siri: That is correct. I use advanced heat dissipation techniques.

An Aite Group poll of 402 wealth managers conducted before the outage found that 45 percent would choose an iPhone or iPad, compared with 14 percent for a BlackBerry reported Reuters. “Siri is pretty amazing. With Android, you have to memorize commands. I don’t understand why it can’t be on all (Apple) phones,” said James Thompson, who had braved the six-hour drive from Los Angeles to San Francisco just to get in line — overnight — with his brother.

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Updated Date: Oct 17, 2011 11:46:53 IST