25 years ago, Knowledge Navigator was Apple's concept of the future. It featured text-to-speech and an equally powerful speech understanding system Funny thing - it is now finally being used in the new iPhone 4s as Siri. This voice-controlled assistant answers to a slew of commands; set alarms, activate contacts, play music, access your calendar, get directions, search the web, etc. There is no doubt that Siri is a step into the future of smartphones, as I presume many phones will roll out next year with this capability.
Check out the videos below to get a feel for how closely the 25 year old technology resembles what is on the iPhone today. Though, Knowledge Navigator is a little more advanced than Siri, in the way it has complete conversations with the user, the concept is the same.
Now check out Siri. Pretty impressive!