Siri has been a part of Apple's iPhone since 2011. The human voice is one of the most personal and unique aspects of every individual, as well as one of the most sought after means of interacting with our devices. Voice-based interfaces have, in fact, been promised as the next big breakthrough for several decades. Until recently, though, they've been much more future promise than current reality. Even with the much heralded introduction of Apple's Siri back in October of 2011, spoken interactions with computing devices have often been more comical than helpful.
Frank is always pressed for time. He has spent almost a decade as the head of a retail store for a large chain. Over the last few years, he has been steadily handed over the reins of four other stores in the chain. His knowledge and expertise are beyond doubt. The problem is that while work has multiplied several folds and his responsibilities have grown, he still has only 24 hours in a workday.
Cybersecurity is big business: expected to be a market of more than $200 billion by 2021. So you can expect to see a lot of innovation in this space in the years to come. However, Master Inventor Mike Spisak and his son Evan recently took it upon themselves to build a special cybersecurity virtual assistant one weekend recently. As Wired points out, this project started with the new generation questioning the old. When Mike showed his son a cybersecurity app on his laptop that allowed you to ask questions via the keyboard, Evan wondered why this couldn't be a voice-based interface.
Answering questions and managing schedules are some tasks people ask voice assistants to work for. The traditional process is slow and clunky; however, with better technology, you can eliminate difficult manual tasks. Updating and checking spreadsheets is a lot of manual work. Voice technology can replace manual work by simply asking the device to tell about the upcoming work schedule. With advances in artificial intelligence and natural language processing, it's no longer a risk to understand requests from voices and styles of speech.
When you think of the power and reach of voice through the lens of technology, you likely think back to simpler times--a time when whole families would gather in front of the radio and listen to Orson Welles' gripping narration of "War of the Worlds," or a time when the only contact you had with your crush was through a landline that you constantly had to fight off your annoying siblings to use. Telephony and radio were huge tech empires built on the power of voice, but as technology evolved, they quickly started becoming obsolete. Video killed the radio star, talking morphed into texting and voice as a tech powerhouse was cracking. But then the tides started turning yet again. Podcasts burst onto the scene and became a surprise hit.