Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Are You There Siri? It's Me, Anne.


Soon it will be time for my phone upgrade, and I am struggling, debating, trying to decide (if you’d like some synonyms) whether I should get Siri. When I first got the iphone 4, which is what I currently have, I didn’t get Siri because I was broke. And that’s not completely untrue now, but I find myself thinking of her with hope and anticipation, except when I’m thinking of her with reluctance and dread.
The problem is, I’m not good with technology and I’m worried she’ll ruin everything. Right now, I love my phone which is a first, because phones count as technology which is ever evil, and goes out of its way to thwart me. I’ve always had a phone; you have to have a phone. (I know. Not literally. But come on.) But, I’ve never actively enjoyed using a phone before, and I love the iphone, it’s fucking awesome. So I’m very excited to get a new phone, one that has more upgrades, and is fancier, with cooler stuff. And I kind of want Siri because she’s fancy and cool and I like the idea of being able to talk to my phone. Technically, I like the idea of my phone being able to talk back; the first part already happens.
Plus if the phone talks back, everything should be even easier, which is part of why Siri is so appealing. But if Siri is a bitch and won’t help me, then I’ll get frustrated and fight with my phone, and  I don’t want to fight with my phone, because I will probably lose and end up crying in the corner. Things have been so good with my old phone and I’m afraid I’ll ruin it all by wanting too much. I don’t want to get greedy. I don’t know what to do. I tried my sister’s Siri and she wasn’t entirely cooperative. So I’m worried.
But on the other hand, what if she’s awesome? What if she’s so helpful, and intuitive, and smart that I start to get worried that she’s kind of alive in there? And I’ll feel like I need to set her free, but I won’t know how. How does one set a Siri free? Leave her on a bus stop bench with her fare tucked in her protective Kevlar shell? I guess she’s a computer, or in a computer, so maybe if I hooked her up to a network or something she’d be able to travel, see the sights, take in a show. Maybe if she couldn’t get away permanently, she could have a play-date with the other Siris. Now I’m back to not understanding technology. So she’ll be stuck in my phone forever. Which is cool (except for the part where she’s my unwilling minion) but only if we’re getting along.
I’m hoping she would be able to help me with storage. This particular technology has been kinder than most, but the one issue I do have is that the phone keeps bitching about not enough storage and sometimes it refuses to record a video or take a memo. And of course, the second my rebelling phone tells me it won’t record, my mind is flooded with genius thoughts and clever turns of phrase. And how am I supposed to hold onto those without a reliable recording device? Huh?
                I imagine myself saying, “Siri, I need more storage,” and she would magically make it so. My current Siri-less iphone always suggests the cloud. About which I am dubious. The cloud. Seriously, I wish I had thought of the fucking cloud. “You’re stuff will be stored in…uh…a cloud! No wait…not just a cloud…The Cloud! (For a mere twenty to one hundred dollars a year, depending on your needs.) I feel like I’m buying a bridge, possibly to nowhere. For fuck’s sake.
I like technology sometimes, on the rare occasions when it decides to do what I’m hoping, but never really expecting, it will do. I enjoy that I can, in theory, check in for my flight from home. I don’t enjoy that I can’t actually check in because my printer is out of ink, and I don’t know why it just can’t run from the power of the fucking cloud. But apparently it can’t.
Or beam. Why can’t the ink beam to my printer? I’ve been ready for beaming technology since I was five. Because then I wouldn’t need a boarding pass. I could beam. And I wouldn’t have to walk to the cupboard because the cookies could beam to me. And then the fat could beam away from my ass. I could sit on the couch forever, and what’s so wrong with that? Come on scientists, let’s go. I pay you to be less lazy, so that I can be more lazy.
It would probably be best if Siri was programmed with the ability to beam stuff for me. Then I could say, “Siri, cookies,” and they would appear in my hand. I would deal with getting them to my mouth all on my own. And I would remember to say, “please,” because you shouldn’t take your Siri for granted. Partly because not taking Siri for granted is just the right thing, but partly because if you did take her for granted, she could really ruin your day. She could beam you into the cornfield like Billy Mumy in The Twilight Zone.
Maybe I shouldn’t get Siri. If we were ever at odds it would end badly for me. She’s better with computers, possibly smarter, and has powers that I can’t begin to understand. But then again, maybe sometimes you have to make a leap of faith and trust that your phone won’t beam you into the cornfield.