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Rotary phone dials up iPhone's Siri

Operator, well, could you help me place this call? A tinkerer merges a Bluetooth headset with an old-style phone to enable Siri on a handset that looks nothing like the iPhone 4S.

Davis Remmel

Remember the days of Betamax, turntables, and Zenith TVs with rabbit ears and big honking dials?

A little retrofitting turned a rotary phone into a Siri-enabled handset. Davis Remmel

Siri has just taken a little trip back to those simpler times of yore with a quaint little hack that turns the voice assistant into an operator reachable via rotary phone (cue the Jim Croce, those of you who remember hearing a voice say "operator" on the other end of the line).

Computer programmer Davis Remmel ripped apart a $2 Bluetooth headset purchased on eBay, fitting its earpiece into the earpiece section of the old phone and the microphone into the mouthpiece. The headset is enabled by dialing "1" on the rotary encoder.

In the video below, Remmel picks up the 20th century handset, dials "1," and delivers the command "Call John Doe." Siri then says, "Calling John Doe's mobile," and proceeds to call the number on Remmel's iPhone 4S, which is connected to the rotary phone. (For more on Remmel's rewiring job, see this detailed account on his blog.)

Given that the hacked phone is now essentially a Bluetooth headset, Remmel could theoretically talk to his friend through the rotary device. Wait, does Remmel actually have a friend named John Doe? But we digress...

It wasn't long ago, of course, that we told you about the Tweephone, a hack that allowed for tweeting via a rotary phone. We keep moving in this direction and the iPhone 5 might look like something straight out of "Mad Men."

(Via Gizmag)