Tuesday November 20, 2018

Talking frequently to Siri on your Iphone may indicate Loneliness: Researchers

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New York, March 29, 2017: It is easy to try to carry on a conversation with Siri, the virtual assistant on your iPhone, or Amazon’s Alexa device from your living room. But if you are doing it more lately, please beware. Researchers suggest that frequent interactions with human-like products may indicate loneliness.

“If someone notices they are talking more to Siri lately, maybe that has something to do with feeling lonely,” said one of the researchers Jenny Olson, Assistant Professor at the University of Kansas School of Business in the US.

“From that standpoint, it’s important to be aware of it,” Olson said.

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While these humanlike products do keep people from seeking out normal human interaction, which is typically how people try to recover from loneliness, there are limits to this phenomenon, and the long-term consequences are unclear, the researchers warned in a study published online in the Journal of Consumer Research.

“Generally, when people feel socially excluded, they seek out other ways of compensating, like exaggerating their number of Facebook friends or engaging in pro-social behaviour to seek out interaction with other people,” Olson said.

“When you introduce a human-like product, those compensatory behaviours stop,” Olson noted.

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In four experiments, the researchers found evidence that people who felt socially excluded would exhibit those compensating behaviours unless they were given the opportunity to interact with a human-like product.

“Alexa isn’t a perfect replacement for your friend Alexis,” lead author James Mourey of DePaul University in Chicago said.

“But the virtual assistant can affect your social needs,” Mourey added. (IANS)

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Top Apps in Apple Store Using Siri Shortcuts

As more apps integrate Siri capabilities, users will be able to do even more with Shortcuts on their iOS devices

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Top apps using Siri Shortcuts to make daily tasks easier: Apple. Pixabay

Top apps in Apple Store are increasingly using Siri shortcuts to make everyday tasks easier for their users, the Cupertino-headquartered company said on Friday.

“Top apps are integrating Siri Shortcuts, making favourite apps even easier to use with a simple tap or by asking Siri,” Apple said in a statement.

Now available with iOS 12, shortcuts use powerful on-device intelligence to help users get things done faster, whether it’s commuting, being more productive, staying healthy, and more, the company added.

Shortcuts allow virtual assistant Siri to complete complex tasks with a single voice command – or sometimes without a voice command at all.

Weather reports from top apps like The Weather Channel, CARROT and Dark Sky are being delivered with simple voice requests like “radar,a “rain report” and “UV index.”

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An Apple store in Woodbridge, Virginia. (VOA)

“Citymapper helps manage the morning commute with real-time departures, line status and disruption alerts, and whether you travel by bus, train, bikeshare or Uber, using Siri Shortcuts on the Transit app,” Apple added.

With a tap on the Lock screen or by asking Siri, users quickly gain access to apps like Evernote, which has created shortcuts to easily share notes, create audio and camera notes and print.

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“At work and at home, users can streamline projects, boards and cards with Siri shortcuts in Trello, Omnifocus 3 and Things,” said the company.

As more apps integrate Siri capabilities, users will be able to do even more with Shortcuts on their iOS devices, it added. (IANS)