Lots of people are fine with allowing a helpful wiretap into their lives. I am not one of them. None of them. So, when I heard that Cortana was being sent out to pasture by Microsoft, I was pretty excited. The dismantling of surveillance apparatus that’s slimed its way into our daily lives always leaves me feeling a little frisky.
That’s according to a support article Microsoft posted to several regional markets this week, though a spokesperson later clarified to Gizmodo that only users in the following areas can expect to say goodbye to the voice assistant: Great Britain, Australia, Germany, Mexico, China, Spain, Canada, and India. Despite dropping the app in these regions, Cortana itself remains “an integral part” of the company’s business model to incorporate “conversational computing and productivity” into its products according to the spokesperson, so Microsoft doesn’t appear to be closing the coffin on it entirely.
According to Gizmodo, at least in North America, we’ll have to put up with the company’s post-Clippy assistant on our smartphones until January 31, 2020.
Cortana’s death has been a long time coming. Last year, Microsoft’s CEO admitted that the company’s virtual assistant could keep up with the likes of Alexa or Siri.
Score one for those of us who don’t want our gadgets listening in on us. I can only hope that Halo’s Master Chief will be able to quickly deal with the loss of his long-term companion and move on with his life.
Image via Wikipedia Commons
‘Used accounts and passwords of other employees to embezzle digital currency’ — DoJ
@radmint tweeted a photo from her Microsoft New Employee orientation in which she is posed with a "celebrity Clippy"; the eagle-eyed Kristen Seversky noted that the forearm of the actor in the Clippy suit is adorned with a seemingly permanent, very prominent Clippy tattoo.
Microsoft maintains the fiction that it has sold its most valuable copyrights and other intangible assets to a tiny factory in Puerto Rico, where, thanks to promising to hire a mere 85 workers, it pays effective zero tax; the company transfers almost all its profits to this factory to "license" its own crown jewels, making […]
Firing up the engines each morning and attacking the day with gusto and purpose can feel like a mighty tall order sometimes. We’ve all been there. But on those sluggish, why-don’t-I-just-stay-here-in-bed-all-day kinda days, it might just take a rational, calming, reassuring nudge to make it happen. No matter what it takes to keep you motivated […]
You may not realize it, but one of the fastest-growing employee benefits over the past several years is one that’s keeping thousands of workers feeling happier and healthier. Back in 2013, only 13 percent of employers were willing to provide or subsidize standing desks for their workers, but by 2019, that number had exploded to […]
First, they were all about serving a protective necessary function. But now, about 10 weeks after the explosion of the COVID-19 outbreak, face masks are beginning to serve a different role. Just like all the fashion accessories that came before them, face masks are now showing off a little piece of ourselves to the everyday […]