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10 cool things you can do with Wolfram Alpha and Siri

28 Oct

Steve Sande and I have been collaborating on "Talking to Siri," an ebook that just recently hit the Kindle store. It's a how-to that will help you get the most done with your Siri intelligent assistant. We're sharing some of our favorite tips with TUAW readers.

Today, we're looking at Siri's Wolfram Alpha integration. You can force Siri to use Wolfram by prefixing your request with "Wolfram." For example, you might say, "Wolfram, what is the square root of 2?" or "Wolfram, graph x-squared plus three."

But there's a lot more that you can do with Wolfram than just math. Here are ten of our favorite Wolfram searches. These highlight the flexibility of this amazing information resource.

  1. Roll a Random Number. Say "Wolfram, random integer." Wolfram returns a random value between 0 and 1000. "Wolfram, random number" provides a 0 to 1 floating point value.
  2. Look up nature facts. Say, "Wolfram, what is the scientific name of a mountain lion?" It's Puma concolor. Rabbits are Leporidae, and Peacocks, Galliformes.
  3. Check upcoming holidays. Say, "How many days until Thanksgiving?" This returns both the number of days as well as a helpful calendar so you can chart out the time until then.
  4. Create a secure password. Say "Wolfram, password." Wolfram generates a difficult-to-crack 8-character password. Scroll down for alternates. If you need a longer password, you can append these together.
  5. Convert text to Morse code. Say, "What is Morse code for horsefeathers?" You'll see the entire sequence laid out for your tapping pleasure.
  6. Check your diet. Say, "How many calories in a small apple?" Wolfram will tell you that there are 75.
  7. Ask out about time zones. Say, "Wolfram, what is the local time in Jakarta?"
  8. Query about your chances. Say, "Wolfram, what is the probability of a full house?" For a random five-card hand, it's apparently 1 in 694.
  9. Have fun with pop culture. Say, "What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?" or "Wolfram, who shot the sheriff?"
  10. Visualize colors. Okay, I've saved the best for last. If you work with colors, this can save you a lot of time. Say, "Wolfram pound sign E 9 7 4 5 1" (for Burnt Sienna / Tangerine) or "Wolfram pound sign 2 9 A B 8 7" (for Jungle Green). This will also convert the colors to RGB values and look up closely-matching brand colors from Benjamin Moore. Make sure to scroll down to catch all the helpful information.

10 cool things you can do with Wolfram Alpha and Siri originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Fri, 28 Oct 2011 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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10 cool things you can do with Wolfram Alpha and Siri

28 Oct

Steve Sande and I have been collaborating on "Talking to Siri," an ebook that just recently hit the Kindle store. It's a how-to that will help you get the most done with your Siri intelligent assistant. We're sharing some of our favorite tips with TUAW readers.

Today, we're looking at Siri's Wolfram Alpha integration. You can force Siri to use Wolfram by prefixing your request with "Wolfram." For example, you might say, "Wolfram, what is the square root of 2?" or "Wolfram, graph x-squared plus three."

But there's a lot more that you can do with Wolfram than just math. Here are ten of our favorite Wolfram searches. These highlight the flexibility of this amazing information resource.

  1. Roll a Random Number. Say "Wolfram, random integer." Wolfram returns a random value between 0 and 1000. "Wolfram, random number" provides a 0 to 1 floating point value.
  2. Look up nature facts. Say, "Wolfram, what is the scientific name of a mountain lion?" It's Puma concolor. Rabbits are Leporidae, and Peacocks, Galliformes.
  3. Check upcoming holidays. Say, "How many days until Thanksgiving?" This returns both the number of days as well as a helpful calendar so you can chart out the time until then.
  4. Create a secure password. Say "Wolfram, password." Wolfram generates a difficult-to-crack 8-character password. Scroll down for alternates. If you need a longer password, you can append these together.
  5. Convert text to Morse code. Say, "What is Morse code for horsefeathers?" You'll see the entire sequence laid out for your tapping pleasure.
  6. Check your diet. Say, "How many calories in a small apple?" Wolfram will tell you that there are 75.
  7. Ask out about time zones. Say, "Wolfram, what is the local time in Jakarta?"
  8. Query about your chances. Say, "Wolfram, what is the probability of a full house?" For a random five-card hand, it's apparently 1 in 694.
  9. Have fun with pop culture. Say, "What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?" or "Wolfram, who shot the sheriff?"
  10. Visualize colors. Okay, I've saved the best for last. If you work with colors, this can save you a lot of time. Say, "Wolfram pound sign E 9 7 4 5 1" (for Burnt Sienna / Tangerine) or "Wolfram pound sign 2 9 A B 8 7" (for Jungle Green). This will also convert the colors to RGB values and look up closely-matching brand colors from Benjamin Moore. Make sure to scroll down to catch all the helpful information.

10 cool things you can do with Wolfram Alpha and Siri originally appeared on TUAW - The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Fri, 28 Oct 2011 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Source | Permalink | Email this | Comments
 
 

Gil Scott-Heron Was Right

25 Oct

The revolution is definitely not going to be televised

 

That ought to win them a local Emmy. The only thing it was missing was “A-bidi A-bidi A-bidi… That’s all folks!” and some Looney Tunes outro music…

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Gil Scott-Heron Was Right

25 Oct

The revolution is definitely not going to be televised

 

That ought to win them a local Emmy. The only thing it was missing was “A-bidi A-bidi A-bidi… That’s all folks!” and some Looney Tunes outro music…

Share This icon 

 
 

“Open Your Holocrons to the Book of Qui-Gon”

25 Oct
I'm not sure exactly how I feel about this Jedi church video, but I do appreciate the honesty of its tenets. I also like that even if you accepted everything in this video as something people actually believed and had faith in, Jedi-ism would still be significantly less goofy than Scientology. (Via Geeks Are Sexy)
 

“Open Your Holocrons to the Book of Qui-Gon”

25 Oct
I'm not sure exactly how I feel about this Jedi church video, but I do appreciate the honesty of its tenets. I also like that even if you accepted everything in this video as something people actually believed and had faith in, Jedi-ism would still be significantly less goofy than Scientology. (Via Geeks Are Sexy)
 

NewsCorp shareholders revolt against Murdoch family

25 Oct

Following up on the contentious NewsCorp shareholder meeting where the independent shareholders were to express their displeasure with the crimes committed on the Murdoch family's watch: the majority of the independent shareholders voted against continuing James and Lachlan Murdoch (Rupert's sons) continuing employment as senior execs in the company. Due to NewsCorp's odd structure the Murdochs get to overrule their shareholders, but if the upcoming shareholder meeting for BSkyB goes the same way, it will see some serious Murdoch tail-kickage.

Michael Wolff, Murdoch biographer and author of The Man Who Owns the News, said it was now inevitable that James Murdoch would leave.

"James will probably go by himself, that's what everybody will be waiting for. I wonder too if Lachlan will step off the board. But could this drag on for another year? Yes."

Wolff said the size of the vote against Murdoch's son had created "a very difficult family moment..."

Tanner said the votes against the Murdoch sons and Bancroft showed shareholders were serious about wanting more independence at News Corp. "The overwhelming influence of the Murdoch family is not acceptable anymore," she said.

James Murdoch's future under threat [guardian.co.uk]

 
 

NewsCorp shareholders revolt against Murdoch family

25 Oct

Following up on the contentious NewsCorp shareholder meeting where the independent shareholders were to express their displeasure with the crimes committed on the Murdoch family's watch: the majority of the independent shareholders voted against continuing James and Lachlan Murdoch (Rupert's sons) continuing employment as senior execs in the company. Due to NewsCorp's odd structure the Murdochs get to overrule their shareholders, but if the upcoming shareholder meeting for BSkyB goes the same way, it will see some serious Murdoch tail-kickage.

Michael Wolff, Murdoch biographer and author of The Man Who Owns the News, said it was now inevitable that James Murdoch would leave.

"James will probably go by himself, that's what everybody will be waiting for. I wonder too if Lachlan will step off the board. But could this drag on for another year? Yes."

Wolff said the size of the vote against Murdoch's son had created "a very difficult family moment..."

Tanner said the votes against the Murdoch sons and Bancroft showed shareholders were serious about wanting more independence at News Corp. "The overwhelming influence of the Murdoch family is not acceptable anymore," she said.

James Murdoch's future under threat [guardian.co.uk]

 
 

My favourite comment ever posted on Reddit

24 Oct


submitted by Yarik32 to funny
[link] [454 comments] [a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net]
 
 

My favourite comment ever posted on Reddit

24 Oct


submitted by Yarik32 to funny
[link] [454 comments] [a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net]