Video Timeline: People Talking To Computers

Apple is betting that Siri — the artificially intelligent assistant that can understand and interpret you as you speak naturally — will make you buy the iPhone 4S. This has been a dream of humans for years, as this video shows.

Phil Schiller said that scientists have been teasing us about this for years. I know that, the first time I saw a Macintalk demo back in the day, I was very impressed. It felt like you could be Captain Kirk talking to the Enterprise's computer. The reality was quite different. It didn't really work and it felt awkward.

Siri is no Macintalk. It seems it works (although I will not be convinced until I see it understanding my thick Spanish accent). But I think it may be awkward just the same. Talking to the computer looks cool when you are on the bridge of the Enterprise. But what about the NYC's subway? Not so much.

Video: Woody Allen Jang

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