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Microsoft voice assistant: Steve Ballmer really wanted to call Cortana bingo

Image: Microsoft

Microsoft’s digital voice assistant Cortana should actually be called Bingo, had it been for former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. With this name, the voice assistant should be better integrated into the nomenclature of the group, whose search engine is called Bing.

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Marketing: “Alyx”, Ballmer: “Bingo”

I’m Big-Bets Newsletter Former Microsoft Product Manager Sandeep Paruchuri goes into more detail about the history and name of Cortana, which was supposed to help the Windows Phone platform, which has since been discontinued, achieve a breakthrough by using it in Windows Phone 8.1 and demonstrate Microsoft’s skills in the field. of the AI. While Steve Ballmer came up with the suggested name “Bingo,” the Microsoft marketing team really wanted to call the digital voice assistant “Alyx” when they got involved in spring 2013 because this name could be pronounced clearly and unambiguously. In addition, Artificial Intelligence must be endowed with its own personality and sense of humor, according to marketing.

The codename Cortana comes from Halo

Previously, the current name Cortana was only used as an internal code name during development and should not be used as the name of the final product. The internal name “Cortana” comes from the game Halo: Combat Evolved, which was developed by Bungie and released on November 15, 2001 by Microsoft Game Studios as the launch title for Microsoft’s first Xbox. Cortana is a fictional, artificially intelligent character in the game that bears this name and is available to the player with tips. Therefore, it is easy to understand why the developers chose this code name.

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Petition asked for Cortana as a name

Cortana, as the internal name of Microsoft’s digital language assistant, penetrated the public through the source code and received such a high level of approval from the fan base that it was prompted by a petition with more than a million followers. to Microsoft to keep the name, that Microsoft finally made the final use of the codename – and saved the bingo world.

Apart from naming, the newsletter has many more Cortana development funds ready.