Paper Airplanes, Creepy Movie App Tracking, Voice Assistant Wars – ACM 452

In this episode, Bryan Chaffin and Jeff Gamet geek out on paper airplanes, or more properly, powered paper airplanes! They also talk about MoviePass location tracking and the voice assistant wars (spoiler, not all home voice assistants are equal).

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2 thoughts on “Paper Airplanes, Creepy Movie App Tracking, Voice Assistant Wars – ACM 452

  • It’s one thing to criticise Echo for being dumb, but all the assistants seem about equal at recognising what was spoken (give or take), it’s what they do with that input that matters! Like it or not Amazon is kicking Apple’s behind over the ‘intelligence’ at the other end of the spoken phrase.

    Amazon might be doing simple lookups but there’s more to it than that, to be coming back with better answers. There’s the words, the look up, then there’s what you send back, that’s the actual “intelligence”, and Echo seems to have more ‘there there’ than Apple however-it’s-done. More embarrassing for Apple which is supposedly applying genuine intelligence, especially when you hear some of Siri’s responses. Embarrassingly dumb is what you’d expect from the Amazon approach! There’s more going on at Amazon than training the user to give input phrases and Apple should be frightened.

    Forget which report, but someone did a study of all 3 cylinders and the best was about 65% and Apple being about 55%. Not a lot of difference really (even if it’s 20% between them), given none of them are much better than working half-the-time. Doesn’t sound ‘good’ even for the best result, and I guess that’s where we get the comment that they’re all not-great. But I’ll bet that 10% amounts to a whole lot less stress using the products and frankly…

    for Apple, pretty embarrassing.

    Remember the interjection in last year’s Talk Show at WWDC, ‘When are you going to make Siri better?’ I know none of them are good, and Siri can do some amazing things, but it really is time Apple execs get asked the hard questions about Siri.
    It seemed smarter before they bought it.
    The founders left Apple and did another assistant.
    (Didn’t like the Bots they added, and I realise Siri was a lot about booking things for you, originally, but I do wonder where Siri would be if they had their way with -frankly- their product within Apple.)
    The combination of Siri’s smart-ars* personality and epic fails are not helping, AT ALL.

    Apple needs to be taken to task about this. They had years head start and ended up in a right mess. Autocorrect seems to be worse than ever – changes every letter in a word rather than see a missed spacebar or hitting a letter instead of the spacebar, for just one example.

    AI at Apple is in a sorry state, and they need a Mac-Pro-moment where they turn things around. And everybody needs to write to Gruber to get him to ask about Siri. Let him know he has our support, and let Apple know, they at least need to be accountable for what’s happening.

  • As much as I and other who frequent the Mac Observer would wish that a majority cares about data privacy, I highly doubt that that is the case. However Movie Pass’ Location Tracking should concern everyone in the tech industry for another reason. This is yet another company that does not inform their “customer” that they are tracking them. This obfuscation of the business model and subsequent reveal damages every tech business by increasing lack of consumer confidence that a company is telling the truth. We have seen this looseness with the truth as well with numerous startups building consumer tech products with lofty promises only to underdeliver or not deliver at all. Kanoa, Coin, Plastic, Pilot Translator, just to name a few. Where is the leadership from the big platforms companies in the tech industry discussing this problem? It is in their interest to get ahead of these fraudsters and grifters from damaging the entire industry.

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