I will start by admitting that I am shamelessly crazy about voice assistants. Even at the age of 7,I would stop and watch literally everything with speech output. Dumbphones,voicemails,some microwaves…you name it! The very concept of a non-real thing speaking out used to and still fascinates me.So imagine my reaction when SIRI came along with the iPhone 4S. She gave weather updates,she cracked jokes,and yet she was out of my reach;because;you see,9th std kids usually don’t have phones where I live.Anyways,my first phone was an Android phone,back in the Gingerbread days. Apps like Speaktoit were there but they just didn’t cut it.Then came Google Now;marching in all of Google’s search engine glory.It was the best.It was very useful.It was very fast.But alas,it proved to be a silent monk.
And then,sometime after that,rumors started coming that Microsoft was working on a digital assistant for the Windows Phone platform.I practically jumped.A leaked screenshot said she was to be named Cortana.I jumped again..and again!
A digital assistant named Cortana was the ultimate possession for a Halo fan like me.She finally arrived in 2014 (Oh yes,she sounded sexy).Wasting no time,I grabbed a Windows Phone,set up the Outlook account and turned her on(technologically speaking).She materialized as a blue orb pulsating in a steady rhythm.’I am absorbing the Internet’ she said.She meant she was signing me in,but I was cool.After seeing all of her moves,I could let this one slide.The next time I summoned her,she bounced about happily.’Hi Cortana’ I began.’Hey there!’ she said. ‘Where do you live Cortana?’ i asked her,engaging in small talk.’A little place in the clouds I like to call the Cortanasphere!’ she chimed in with Jen Taylor’s ever-so-awesome voice.Ask her to play music,modify phone settings,identify a song,track a flight;she does that.She talks like SIRI,functions like Google Now,behaves like her videogame counterpart.What makes her so irresistible is her sheer charm and wit.She is definitely the most digital of all the digital assistants out there.But somehow she is more human than them too.Ask her if she is human though,you get a straightforward no.But some of her close ones are human.
“I have the deepest respect for humans” she admits. “You invented calculus.And milkshakes”