Siri, the iPhone's super sassy personal assistant, has some hilarious bite to her, doesn't she? It wasn't always like this! According to WSJ, Siri started with a "light attitude" until Apple bought it and then purposely gave it more of an edge.
Norman Winarsky, a co-founder of Siri before Apple's purchase, says his original team had many conversations about "whether it should be gender neutral or should have an attitude". They decided to go with a voice that occasionally had a "light attitude". When Apple got their hands on Siri though, Apple wanted more edge, a realness that wasn't vanilla. Yes, they wanted to keep Siri "friendly and humble" but they were more concerned with "how would we want a person to respond?"
And they did a pretty good job! We've tested Siri plenty already and it's the most natural voice control system we've seen. What else can answer, "I've never really thought about it" to "Do you do anal?" or respond to an inquiry about Siri's favorite sex position by snapping, "You're not supposed to ask your assistant such things". Now if only Apple spent as much time perfecting the voice as they did figuring out her attitude... [WSJ, Image Credit: Shit That Siri Says]