Interview: Siri

Matt Looker

6th January 2014

Remember when Siri first came out and everyone posted hilarious interactions with her because it was new and because Apple are clever and because fun? Well thanks to Buzzfeed asking Siri about new film Her, she's relevant again! Well, for at least a day or so. Click through quickly!

Whichever way you slice it, Siri marks an important technological advancement, the closest thing we have to a comprehending A.I. at our fingertips and surely the first step on the path for us all to eventually be slaughtered by killer robots from the future.

So it's important to experiment with this technology and see how well it interacts with important cultural touchstones, putting it - and Apple - to the test as to how well it copes with exploratory questions about the ever-growing world in which we live.

(Full disclosure: I was recently made redundant and, while everyone else has gone back to work today, I am currently sitting on my sofa at home in my pyjamas, bored off my tits with only my iPad for company)

So let the Q&A commence. As with any other interview, I start by asking Siri to confirm the most recent news report about her.

Well, that's a good start - a different answer to Buzzfeed, even if it is just as cagey. Maybe I should continue down this route of asking Siri if she is other famous film computers?

Well, that's... not strictly true. Let's move away from computers then.

Hmm. Being tight-lipped and guarded about the question, or a simple tech malfunction? The spelling of the question suggests the latter. Let's try a different angle. What happens if I ask movie quote questions?

Ok, to be fair, that's my fault. There isn't a box or a copy of Se7en in plain sight nearby, so I can understand why Siri didn't come back with "Gwyneth Paltrow's head".

In a way, that's the one and only correct answer, so well done Siri. How about something a little more complicated though?

NO! No... please don't search for that on the web. Let's try something else. How about a normal, generic Q&A session about films?

Um... wow. That's a surprisingly eloquent and relevant response (even if it still doesn't quite answer the question).

Ok... still surprised how well this is going so far, even if it is like pulling teeth for an actual opinion.

An opinion! Albeit a slightly confusing one. Is Siri outing HAL as female?

Well, ok, but your timing's a little off. Still, good to know that you think 2001: A Space Odyssey might be good based on some reviews, even though your previous answer suggests that you have actually seen it.

Ok, a bit of a miscommunication there. Don't worry, I'm sure we can pull it back. Let's try some specifics.

Wow, Siri really is cagey about everything, isn't she?

Whether you understand the correct name or not, that's... that's just not any kind of answer to anything.

Ok, this isn't working. Let's get back to the more generic questions again.

Oh, I'm sorry - am I boring you?

I forget why I did this. Can someone give me a job?

More:  Her  Spike Jonze  Siri  Boredom
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