The most interesting new thing Apple unveiled on Tuesday at its 2011 iPhone event was Siri natural language voice recognition. This allows you to talk to your phone to do searches and voice-activated commands — especially based on location information or related to communications apps. Siri can also talk back to you to give you the information you're asking for or to clarify a search. The whole thing looks like a decent step forward in artificial intelligence and natural language interaction, although we'll still need to see how frustrating it becomes for average users in the real world.
Apple bought Siri last April, when it was simply a mobile app available in the iOS App Store. Apple and the Siri team have taken the technology forward since then and it's interesting to note that Apple chose to keep the Siri name for the app and now spin it as Siri being the name of your new personal assistant.
Here are two videos of Siri in action so you can get a look at how this works. The first video shows clips about Siri from Apple's presentation on Tuesday and the second video shows my CNET colleagues actually giving it a spin in the demo room afterward.
Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the book, Follow the Geeks.