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How exactly does siri work anyway?

By Anjali Dubey

Whenever you pick up your phone and say “hey siri! Call mom” have you ever stopped to think how exactly this process happens? How does your phone listen to your voice and then perform the action? If not here’s how.

Contrary to your belief, siri wasn’t entirely developed by Apple. It was an AI initiative started to help military personals with office work and making decisions. It was used for organizing and scheduling meetings as well as providing the necessary documents for the participants. When apple acquired siri they removed some of its features like its humor and bad language but gave it multilingual capabilities and added some iphone specific features to it.

Siri basically works on two technologies: speech recognition and natural language processing. When you say “hey siri” and then say a command for instance “what is the meaning of casuistry?” Siri records frequencies and sound waves from your voice and breaks them down to code. After it reaches the server, the NLP or the natural language processor is activated which inputs your code to an algorithm which passes through thousands of combinations to determine what the user is trying to say. After that, Siri begins to assess the task depending on whether the data needs to be extracted from the user’s device or searched online. In this case, the answer being the latter, siri looks for the meaning of the word online. Then, using its capability to form coherent sentences, it responds with your answer.

The invention of technologies like Siri are an excellent measure of how rapidly fields like artificial intelligence are progressing and what kind of miracles can be brought to life using them. It will be so exciting to see how tech companies, not only Apple but also other leading tech giants use artificial intelligence to their advantage and build new products or add fascinating features to their existing ones in the future.

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