I was demonstrating Siri yesterday to my friend, showing how it can search the internet for random images (show me an image of a chickadee, a Volkswagen GTI, Albert Einstein, a pressure cooker, etc.) and it was pulling images from the web until I had it search pit-bulls using the phrase "show me a picture of a pit bull."

Siri found and displayed images of my 2 pit-bulls from the Photos app on the iPhone! It would not find any images when I searched using the dog's names, however. When I tested this same search phrase with "German Shepherd" it found images of three other dogs in Photos, which are shepherd mixes, not pure breeds.

Most of the selected images were basically face-on (two eyes looking at the camera, floppy ears, etc,) but some are from the side and it found them even though pit #1 has a narrow face, pit #2 has a block-head, and none of the shepherds have the typical erect ears.

I know that facial recognition is pretty far advanced in iOS, but I had no idea it could recognize dog breeds, and I was amazed that using "show me a picture" searches the Photos app. What is more disturbing is that I deliberately set Siri not to search inside the Photos app:

enter image description here

Does anybody have a clue what is going on? I realize this question may be interpreted as a 'why Apple does something' query, and I will accept a downvote or two. I'll delete the question if folks think its immaterial in the long run.

I'm mystified.

  • I don't think this is a "why does Apple do...' question; it looks on-topic to me. – fsb Jul 31 '18 at 14:44

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