Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

My job requires me to set up several Windows PCs per week. That means several times per week, I have to hear the following:

“Hi there! I’m Cortana, and I’m here to help. A little sign-in here, a touch of Wi-Fi there, and we’ll have your PC ready for all you plan to do.”

I typed that from memory because it is constantly echoing in my head. I cannot escape it. It’s the bane of my existence. I do not want to use Cortana. I do not want Cortana to help me boot up several PCs a week. Please, Cortana, leave me alone. But for years, my complaints have been shouts into the void that Microsoft has not heard.

That’s why I’m a bit too excited about one of the tiny announcements that Microsoft just made. If you dig into the company’s Windows 11...

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