You need to know what's on the cutting-edge of technology. Find out what's coming and the unique Warptest POV with just one click on the "Blog" tile.

All posts tagged Siri

Meetings Suck

Come on, admit most meetings suck. They aren’t particularly productive; most people amble to and from work meetings in a semi-stupor and we tend to spend way too much time in them.

When was the last meeting you got to amped up?
When was the last meeting you left feeling inspired or driven?
When was the last meeting you ran that was on subject and you nailed it?

ABC - Officing

Why Do Meetings Suck and Why Do We Suck At Meetings?

Most of us know how to schedule a meeting from Google Calendar or Outlook but usually that’s where we start to cock things up:

Stop using vague titles.
Where is the agenda?
Do all those people really need to come to this meeting? All the wrong people in all the wrong places.
Do you fear attachments? Don’t worry, link to the relevant documents in your company cloud.
Timing is everything. Not just when in the day but how long. Most meetings can get to done in 30 minutes. Some need an hour. Very few need more than this and those need a break in the middle.

The fact is we suck at meetings because running a productive meeting is a skill. A skill that requires continuous improvement. We dump people in the workplace and expect them to know how to run a meeting and deliver results.

Most people don’t really understand the point of a meeting or how to run one.

What’s the Point of It All?

Understanding this one thing about meetings.

Screengrab from the 1991 Castle Rock Entertainment movie, City Slickers via YouTube.

meetings suck - one thing


Solution means decisions. Decisions mean action items. A meeting with no decisions is a waste of time. What did you solve?

The Warptest POV

You attacked the problem and engaged people in the meeting. You made sure everyone got to speak and was heard. Now write down every decision and treat it as an action item.

After the meeting, you share a summary where these action items are assigned to specific people with deadlines. Without this, meetings suck and will continue to suck.

All your calendar and appointment apps are great at setting meetings, but then the reminder just disappears without asking you to follow up. Certainly, none of them integrate an action driven follow-up.

Cortana - Windows 8

In an age of Siri, Cortana, Google Now why aren’t these Digital Assistants integrated with your meetings to record meetings? Why aren’t they asking you to follow up? Why isn’t text-to-speech built in, so you can run the meeting without the distraction of taking notes?

Microsoft has already enabled Cortana integration with Office 365. This is the start. At Build 2017 they announced the preview of Cortana Skills to solve this kind of problem. Alternatively, you can add their new Dictate service to your Office 365 to allow Word to convert what’s said in the meeting to text.


Game on Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook.

ms dewey msn

Ms Dewey, who?!??

In 2006 Microsoft needed an edge, Google and Yahoo were serious contenders in the Search Engine wars. Microsoft’s Live Search needed something.

McCann Erickson and EVB San Francisco came up with Ms Dewey. She emulated an intelligent, interactive and of course attractive Search Engine.

The actress, Janina Gavankar portrayed the Live Search Engine which ultimately could have become an Apple Siri killer had Microsoft done more with this idea than simply left this as a Flash website to market what would ultimately be rebranded from Live Search to Bing.

Ms. Dewey as a virtual assistant, albeit in those days not mobile was clever, sharp and witty and amassed a huge following with a Facebook group pushing for her return. The site managed in some small way to rebrand Live Search and add a fun, entertaining aspect to the science of search.


Admittedly, the group admits that the push is for the actress to return as Ms. Dewey, less than for the quality of search results that Live Search provided through the Adobe Flash frontend.

In the end Siri, Apple’s new amazing, voice-controlled Personal Assistant is for once a late contender, following on the heels of Ms. Dewey.

Had someone at Microsoft foreseen the huge potential then who knows the Windows Phone 7 could be a little different:


The author of this piece can neither confirm or deny that their tongue was firmly inserted into their cheek whilst writing this Smile

Perhaps, bringing Ms Dewey back to the fold as Microsoft’s flagship search / help avatar might both on Windows Phone and Windows 8 might make for a better transition.

Wouldn’t you like Ms Dewey to help you find your way around Windows 8?