Dag Kittlaus, and Adam Cheyer both cofounders of Siri, eventually left Apple and went on to start something more ambitious: Viv, a next generation personal assistant. The small team claims that Viv could not only remove many of the limitation of Siri, but it could change the way software is fundamentally built.
“I’m extremely proud of Siri and the impact it’s had on the world, but in many ways it could have been more,” Cheyer says. “Now I want to do something bigger than mobile, bigger than consumer, bigger than desktop or enterprise. I want to do something that could fundamentally change the way software is built.”
Viv Labs acknowledges the abundance of voice-navigated system on the market today (Google Now, Microsoft Cortana, etc), however Viv is more than just pre-programmed answers to people's queries.
Viv breaks through those constraints by generating its own code on the fly, no programmers required. Take a complicated command like “Give me a flight to Dallas with a seat that Shaq could fit in.” Viv will parse the sentence and then it will perform its best trick: automatically generating a quick, efficient program to link third-party sources of information together—say, Kayak, SeatGuru, and the NBA media guide—so it can identify available flights with lots of legroom. And it can do all of this in a fraction of a second.
Viv is in early stages of development, but if the team is successful, it would be revolutionary for AI and personal assistants. "We are looking at the future of intelligent agents and a multibillion-dollar industry,” says AI expert Oren Etzioni.
The core Siri team originally went to Apple with this project, but some members of the team reportedly had difficulties with executives who were less respectful of their vision for Siri. As a result, Kittlaus left Apple the day after SIri's launch, the same day Steve Jobs died. Cheyer left several months later.
“I do feel if Steve were alive, I would still be at Apple,” Cheyer says. “I’ll leave it at that.”
The third Siri cofounder Gruber, still remains at Apple.