I think this provides a handy counterpoint to my guided relaxation meditation for tech power users. And it makes me think our devices — from computers to GPSes to smartphones — may have been trying to pass on some pretty deep life lessons for a long time.
Is “abort/retry/fail?” a simple prompt…or the pithiest possible summary of the fundamental human question?
Is it an accident that AmigaDOS used to crash with a “Guru Meditation”… or a call to mindfulness?
When Siri says “I didn’t understand that,” is it a parsing failure… or a reminder to speak what’s truly in our hearts, with the clarity and simplicity that come only with complete honesty?
Here’s that meditation, btw.
Originally posted on ReadWriteWeb
Today’s cartoon may well be an exercise in envy. I’m using an iPhone 3GS, and it’ll be another 14 months (or 424 days – not that I’m counting) before I’ll be eligible for a free upgrade to a phone that lets me use that Siri-esque magic.
And voice-control easily the feature I’m most drawn to right now when I start looking covetously at other, more advanced, less diesel-powered Androids and iPhones. (Yes, this Mac fanboy is tempted by Android… even though my investment in iOS apps probably exceeds my retirement savings. Those things better appreciate in resale value over time, or my retirement isn’t going to come much before age 103.)
The thing that’s seized my imagination is the idea of adding to my task list by voice, the wayOmniFocus works with Siri. And just writing that makes me pause: is task management really the sexiest thing I can think of to do with voice recognition?
Well, probably not. But maybe the best thing about advances in mundane tasks is the way they free us to use the truly sexy features that technology has offered us for years: creating, writing, connecting, and yeah, cartooning. The truth is, I’m so far from making full use of the creative power of well-established digital networked technology that lusting after the cutting-edge stuff makes little sense for me. That is, unless I can rationalize that it’s to unlock more time and attention to creative endeavour.
Fortunately, rationalization is one of the skills I’ve practised the most in this business. Just 424 days to go.