No, not the Siri we all know and love, disdain and disparage; the Computer on Star Trek that acted like and spoke like, well, a computer. Siri is different. Siri tries to be more human-like. Siri is everywhere; Mac, iPhone, iPad, and now Watch.
Apple launched Siri Shortcuts with iOS 12 and instead of having to remember a long list of actions Siri already knows how to perform, Siri circa 2018 is customizable with shortcuts. We tell Siri what to learn. Siri can suggest shortcuts to use to get certain actions accomplished. There’s a Siri Shortcuts Gallery. Shortcuts have become the new way to interact with Siri because Siri learns what we want to get done, instead of us having to learn Siri’s language actions.
Except for one thing. I’ve been using Siri Shortcuts– I have dozens and dozens installed on my iPhone and iPad (they sync via iCloud; nice)– for a month or so and it’s driving the rest of the Mincey Plantation residents bat-doo-doo crazy.
Why? I’m talking to Siri too much.
Instead of simply tapping away on my iPhone or iPad screen to get things done, I’m telling Siri to do them for me.
- Siri, Check Weather
- Siri, Open Carrot
- Siri, Make PDF
- Siri, Do Not Disturb Until I Leave Home
- Siri, Call Jesse
- Siri, Open Calculator
- Siri, Send A Message To Jesse
- Siri, Dictate And Share
- Siri, Calculate Tip
- Siri, Run AM Playlist
- Siri, When Do I Need To Leave?
- Siri, Share My Location
- Siri, Remind Me At Work
- Siri, Read Me The News
Each of those Siri Shortcuts requires me to speak out loud to Siri. Similar actions in the past required a couple of taps on the iPhone or iPad screen. Now I’m talking and Siri is listening. I like it that Siri can perform such personalized tasks. The rest of the Mincey family prefers that I shut up or leave the room when I need to talk to Siri.
Siri isn’t making me tired of talking to her. The rest of the family has a set of looks and scowls that get aimed in my direction in the hopes I’ll take the hint, lower my voice, step outside, or go back to yesteryear and just tap the damned screen to get something done.
We’re in the early stages of a paradigm shift of sorts in how we interact with our computers; iPhone included. In Star Trek Classic, the computer was spoken to only every now and again, and despite being far more capable and intelligent than Siri (assumption on my part), nobody complained about such conversations.
I might be a bit tired of talking to Siri when nobody else in the household has climbed on board my new Paradigm Train, but at least Siri hasn’t grown tired of getting things done.