Review Category : Research

Kodu is a free game development tool originally released by Microsoft Research team targeting kids to learn game development and programming. Now, Microsoft Studios has released this app for Windows 8/RT devices for free in Windows Store. If you have kids at home, then this is a must have game for them. Description: Kodu lets you create games through a simple visual programming language. Kodu can be used to teach creativity, problem solving, storytelling, as well as programming. Anyone can use Kodu to make a game with no design or programming skills. Features: Kodu is a rich tool for narrative creation and storytelling Kodu demonstrates that programming is a creative medium Kodu helps children with critical thinking, breaking a complex goal into manageable steps, and iterate on the design process Kodu introduces the logic and problem solving of programming Kodu introduces conditions and sequences, which teaches cause and effect Kodu ...

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We rarely happen to see Microsoft and Google working on something together. Last time, we saw them together to for patent issues and then for PRISM spying scandal. Today, Dailymail reported that Google has agreed to block child porn related links from its search results. Google will now prevent depraved images and videos from appearing on its search results, and they will expand this blockage to 156 other languages in 6 months. ‘We’ve fine-tuned Google Search to prevent links to child sexual abuse material from appearing in our results.’ Microsoft will also make similar restrictions on its Bing search engine. While Microsoft will be providing the technology called PhotoDNA that will allow officials to automatically find child porn images across the web, Google has developed breakthrough technology that will allow illegal videos to be ‘tagged’ so that all duplicate copies can be removed across the internet. Good job by both Microsoft ...

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  Microsoft today announced two new roles for their senior leaders Eric Rudder and Harry Shum. Eric Rudder who was heading Advanced Strategy & Research group will become Executive Vice President, Advanced Strategy and Harry Shum who was leading Bing engineering team will become Executive Vice President, Technology & Research. Both of them will report directly to Steve Ballmer starting mid-December. Read the full email below. From: Steve Ballmer To: Microsoft – All Employees Date: Nov. 13, 2013 Subject: New Roles for Eric Rudder and Harry Shum Today, I’m excited to announce new roles for Eric Rudder and Harry Shum. Eric will take on a newly created role as Executive Vice President, Advanced Strategy, and Harry will take on Eric’s current responsibilities as Executive Vice President, Technology & Research. Both Eric and Harry will report to me and both changes take effect in mid-December. Eric has led our Advanced Strategy ...

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We have seen many projects from Microsoft Research around Artificial Intelligence in the past. Today, Long Zheng posted a old video in which Eric Horvitz, the co-director of Microsoft Research Redmond and a distinguished scientist in the field of artificial intelligence at TEDxAustin spoke about Microsoft’s work in Artificial Intelligence. He spoke about Artificial Intelligence and machine learning, Distinguished Scientist and co-director at Microsoft Research, Eric Horvitz, shares the human side of advancing machine intelligence. An admitted advocate for empowering machines to perform more fluidly with us, he explains how computational systems will complement human cognition in order to anticipate our needs and help us prepare for inevitable surprises of all scale and size In nurturing and supportive ways. When Readwrite profiled Peter Lee, the corporate vice president for Microsoft Research, he spoke about MSR’s short term and long term goals. He said the following about Disruptive (Also Known As “Moon Shots”) work ...

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Microsoft Research today posted the above video which shows how Kinect’s sign language translation capabilities help the hearing and the deaf communicate. You can communicate between American sign language and Chinese sign language or potentially any sign languages to any other natural languages. Kinect detects the sign language and converts into natural spoken language. There is a avatar in the system to represent the hearing person doing the signing. It’s a proxy for the hearing person. It basically uses machine language and pattern recognition to achieve this results. This project has a huge potential. Watch the video above. Read more from http://research.microsoft.com/ ...

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  As expected, Microsoft is already exploring the ways to navigate Windows using Kinect gestures. Even though Kinect had a official Windows SDK for a longtime, Microsoft never showed off a way to navigate Windows using air gestures. Today, The Verge revealed that Microsoft Research is already exploring the potential use of it. In this project, you will be mounting a Kinect camera above a desk and it detects a number of gestures above and around a keyboard and mouse. Microsoft Researcher Abigail Sellen says the following, “What we don’t want here is Tom Cruise in minority report,” “What gestures are good at are being very casual, expressive. What they’re not good at is being precise. Touch is good at that, mouse pointer is good at that. We don’t need to do that with gestures.” “We’re not doing anything precise, and nothing that requires you to hold your hands up ...

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We heard about Microsoft’s IllumiRoom project back at CES and since then there were reports that Microsoft is planning to release it as a consumer device as part of Xbox offering in 2014. Speaking to Ausgamer, Albert Penello, head of product planning for Xbox One revealed that IllumiRoom is not coming anytime soon. “I wouldn’t expect you’ll see that,” Penello said. “It’s very, very cool tech but it’s, like, for a consumer, it requires projectors and things. It’s really super-neat if you’re in the lab and you’ve got Microsoft money and you could totally set up this awesome lab, but… we looked at it, but for an average customer it’s, like, thousands of dollars [for the set up].” Some info about IllumiRoom, IllumiRoom uses a Kinect for Windows camera and a projector to blur the lines between on-screen content and the environment we live in allowing us to combine our ...

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Speaking at Microsoft Research Faculty Summit, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said that Microsoft Bob-style personal assistants may re-emerge with more sophistication. We have already seen arrival of such programs in the name of Apple’s Siri, Google Now, etc, which are nothing but modern age Microsoft Bob/Clippy. These programs offer personal assistance by understanding what users are doing and anticipating their needs. Here is the transcript of Bill’s answer to the question related to it at the event. He explained, “It’s been talked about for decades, and now really is possible — where we see where you’re going, we see your calendar, we see your various communications. … We can actually look at the text, look at the speech, try to be helpful to you in your activities. I think we will be more connected and therefore if somebody wants to do a task like find a gift of a certain ...

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  Microsoft Research has released a new SDK/Framework called Lab of Things that supports their existing HomeOS project. Here is the description about HomeOS from Microsoft Research. To simplify the management of technology and to simplify the development of applications in the home, we are developing an “operating system” for the home. HomeOS provides a centralized, holistic control of devices in the home. It provides to users intuitive controls to manage their devices. It provided to developers high-level abstractions to orchestrate the devices in the home. HomeOS is coupled with a HomeStore through which users can easily add obtain applications that are compatible with devices in their homes and obtain any additional devices that are needed to enable desired applications. So what is Lab of Things (LoT) and how it is related to HomeOS? Lab of Things (LoT) is a flexible platform for experimental research that uses connected devices in homes. LoT enables easy interconnection ...

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Microsoft Research today released a new app called BLINK Cliplets for Windows 8/RT devices in Windows Store. This new BLINK Cliplets app  lets you combine and loop static and dynamic elements from short video clips. The resulting Cliplets can range from artistic to ingenious to outlandish. Description: BLINK Cliplets lets you exercise your creative talents by layering static and dynamic visual elements. Create fun and surprising results that you can share with friends or the world. Import or record short videos, and choose which parts to animate and which parts to freeze. You can then share your cliplet on Facebook, Twitter, or BLINK.so.cl, or simply save it as an animated GIF or video file. Features: •- Record or import a video •- Use touch or mouse to create animated layers •- Share your cliplet on Facebook, Twitter, or BLINK.so.cl •- Export your cliplet as an animated GIF, MP4 video, or ...

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Microsoft FUSE labs today announced a significant update for So.cl social network. It has got cool new features which you can try right away. Socl now offers a set of simple, fun “create experiences” that make it even easier to express and share ideas with people worldwide – from rich visual collages to short animated media and memes, there’s even more ways to create, collect and share stuff you love – on Socl, and other social networks. Picotale Part “meme-generator,” part game, Picotales are little stories made by overlaying text on an image. BLINK Currently available for Windows devices, BLINK apps provide ways to capture, create and share short dynamic media using Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8. Collage - now with upload! Collage, Socl’s “go to” create experience now includes image upload…collages are comprised of images, links and videos found on the web or uploaded to Socl. Video Party ...

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Microsoft today shared it vision for the future of computer technology involved in automotive industry. Microsoft called the “intelligent car” is a scenario in which telematics data can help improve both the driving experience and the design of the vehicle for the driver. Read the below description of their vision, It means a world in which the same information that is available to drivers today to improve fuel efficiency or vehicle maintenance – speed, braking, fuel consumption, tire pressure and environmental conditions – can be used by carmakers to evaluate day-to-day performance to improve design on next year’s model or even fine tune an engine “over the air” to improve fuel economy of the current model year. Carmakers will increasingly have the ability to provide iterative updates, much in the same way that computer software works today, that refresh the driving experience and extend compatibility to the latest consumer devices. ...

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Microsoft Research FUSE Labs today announced two new features that is part of the updated Socl social-information network. Here are the two new features: Collection Moderators Now, every collection has at least one moderator who comes from the Socl community. Moderators have the ability to edit the title, description and tags of a collection. Moderators may also remove inappropriate or off topic posts from a collection at their discretion. “Us” Collections With the addition of Collection Moderators, we are now offering a third type of Collection – “Us” Collections. Now you can invite others to moderate a collection with you; you can also decide if you would like that collection to be visible to everyone or only your co-contributors. Read more about it from the link below. Check out the features at http://www.so.cl/. Source: FUSE ...

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Microsoft is working on some cool telepresence projects which was revealed by their latest job listings. Microsoft was always criticized for not utilizing their R&D well enough to make them into marketable products. Microsoft is trying to change this scenario with the new startup labs which will be productizing ideas and code from Microsoft Research. Recently two new job listings revealed that a team is working on creating immersive telepresence products based on MSR inputs and current Microsoft communication products like Skype, Lync, etc, The Microsoft Mesa project is creating immersive telepresence products that will change the way remote workers experience and are experienced in meetings. Mesa offers an equal blend of software and hardware challenges so you will get a chance to work on unique technologies that are unlike any other part of Microsoft. We build on top of proven technologies like Lync and Skype, but also use new ...

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Craig Mundie, a senior adviser to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, showed off the company’s upcoming products in a talk at Yale University. In the lecture which is titled, “How Tomorrow’s Technologies Will Shape Your World,”  Mundie discussed Microsoft’s efforts to make human-technology interaction more natural and productive, and gave some sneak peek examples of  how the company is bringing such products to businesses and consumers. He added that over the next few years, Microsoft anticipates a shift from the current graphical user interface of  “pointing and clicking and typing” to a “natural user interface” of  “touch and other forms of human sense-like capabilities”. He also said that we’d really like a computer to be more like us, and through that, we want many more people to get computing capability. He emphasized that “There’s no reason to believe that in the future that any person who’s buying a television or a cellphone ...

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Microsoft Research FUSE Labs announced a significant update for its Socl information network. This spring update brings a new look and new features. The site now features improved site navigation, better post creation, featuring, private messages support and more. Read the full list below. - Simplified site navigation, including: create a post button discover (full site search and discovery) pinned menu for quick access to notifications, messages, setting, parties and about centered Socl logo to refresh the page single click access to your profile feed pivots between following and everyone - Collections and Interests merged into one concept collections curated by everyone (formerly Interests) collections curated by individuals, including private collections collection descriptions tags now done at the collection level rather than the post level and applied only by collection followers - Better post creation, featuring: drag and drop resize shuffle share to other social networks - Personal opportunity cards ...

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