Monday, 12 October 2015

Siri arrgh

Apple's digital assistance - Siri - is a feature that almost works really well, but because of its anthropocentric qualities that 'almost' is enough to drive me crazy. That, and its almost-great voice recognition means that Siri is possibly the first bit of technology that I've ever had that I shout or swear at.

Siri's latest shenanigans/quirk/bug is when activated while a podcast is playing it detects the last word or two that was said on the podcast and try to respond to it. This is infuriating, especially as there doesn't seem to be any easy to use mechanism to carry on with an interaction once you've said no to something. So I get this a lot:

  1. Activate Siri while podcast is playing
  2. Siri does something (or fails to do something) in response to the last word or two spoken on the podcast
  3. I tell Siri that no, I don't want whatever it is trying to offer me
  4. Siri becomes unresponsive to voice commands
  5. Me: "Hey Siri.... Hey Siri...... HEY SIRI.... SIRI... SIRI... HEY SIRI..... AAARGH YOU &*()*$"(*"$%%%"
There's probably something to say here about the intentional stance, about how trying to build human-like interfaces builds expectations of human-like interaction, and so on... but its late and Siri has made me cranky.