Siri Stops to Chat With Eliza, Comedy Ensues

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Although it's still in beta, Siri on the iPhone 4s is pretty useful if you happen to be driving, busy around the house, or even visually impaired. Of course, what makes Siri even better is its ability to have conversations, sometimes with pretty hilarious results (language NSFW!). However, all these conversations have one thing in common: They're all a human talking to a machine. So what about device-to-device encounters?

Game designer Jordan Mechner decided to pair up Siri with Eliza, a BASIC simulation program created in 1966 as a form of psychotherapy. When he put the two together, a very interesting and long--but slightly disjointed--conversation ensued.

Past the typical greeting, which both programs carry off well, Eliza is clearly the better conversationalist. Unlike Siri, Eliza is able to have a conversation without trying to link it to a command, such as finding a business. Siri on the other hand, although responsive, occasionally completely misunderstands, tries to find a business, or make a phone call. The dialogue ends in Siri beginning to phone a random person in Jordan's address book. Don't worry, Siri; Eliza is 45 years your senior, after all.

You can check out the full transcript of the coversation between the pair on Jordan's website.

As you can see, quite a strange match. As previously mentioned, Siri is still in beta, so has a way to go before converstaions with the software as a human or robot are able to flow as well as Eliza or even with another human. Personally, it would be cool to see a successful conversation between Siri on two different iPhones.

[Jordan Mechner]

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This story, "Siri Stops to Chat With Eliza, Comedy Ensues" was originally published by PCWorld.

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