Over-Promise and Under-Deliver

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

We’ve covered The Callousness of Siri before, but how about Siri’s accuracy? You’ve likely seen the Apple ad featuring Samuel L. Jackson using Siri1. If you’ve used Siri yourself, however, you know the disclaimer of “Sequences shortened” is more than an understatement. They’ve edited out the inevitable “No.…NO.…NO!” as well as significant quantities of exasperated sighs. After hearing Jackson say the word “hotspacho” for the umpteenth time, I decided to run a little test.

How Siri interprets it when I say “Remind me to put the gazpacho on ice in an hour”:

  • Put the spot show on ice

  • Put the spots on Icenhour

  • Put tickets botulinum2

Thinking that perhaps my enunciation was poor, I attempted the same thing with the exact audio from the ad3. Things went from bad to worse:

How Siri interprets it when Samuel L. Jackson says “Remind me to put the gazpacho on ice in an hour”:

  • Call Mirium Booksbaum

  • Call Anna-Genelle Harev

  • Call Ron Ridenhour

I can’t imagine why these all turned into phone calls, but it’s especially amusing to know that all of the above names are actually combinations of my various contacts invented by Siri, not real people. Finally, in desperation, I attempted to get Siri to understand just the word “gazpacho”.

How Siri interprets the word “gazpacho”:

  • Just Bacchio

  • This Bogil

  • This Poncho

Cheese and crackers. Perhaps I should just be thankful Siri didn’t tell me to go back to Russia4.


  1. Archived here. ↩︎

  2. Yeah, “botulinum”, there’s a word I use frequently. ↩︎

  3. Using this audio clip. ↩︎

  4. The relevant video and the obligatory archive. ↩︎

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