Review Category : Research

Rick Rashid, Microsoft’s Chief Research Officer gave a demonstration in Tianjin, China at Microsoft Research Asia’s 21st Century Computing event. He discussed about the Speech recognition in computing and the recent breakthrough Microsoft has in it. Until recently though, even the best speech systems still had word error rates of 20-25% on arbitrary speech. Just over two years ago, researchers at Microsoft Research and the University of Toronto made another breakthrough. By using a technique called Deep Neural Networks, which is patterned after human brain behaviour, researchers were able to train more discriminative and better speech recognizers than previous methods. During my October 25 presentation in China, I had the opportunity to showcase the latest results of this work. We have been able to reduce the word error rate for speech by over 30% compared to previous methods. This means that rather than having one word in 4 or 5 ...

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Microsoft and Google -as well as Dell, HP, Phillips and Intel- have expressed an interest in using ‘white spaces’ in their devices in order to provide their users with the convenience of widespread broadband access.  The white-space spectrum used by Microsoft is between 512-698 megahertz, offering a longer range than the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi networks we use currently, thus allowing people in rural areas to have better signal. The rumour is that Microsoft is planning to offer free WIFI as a value-added feature on Nokia’s handsets, with Senior government sources telling The Sunday Telegraph that Microsoft and Google have expressed “extreme interest” in unused sections of airwaves known as white spaces The two companies are rumored to looking to offer nation-wide WIFI to their smartphone users in UK using White Spaces spectrum. To clarify, white spaces are gaps between airwaves used for television, radio and mobile services, which are also used to prevent interference between ...

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Although rumours of the integration of finger tracking in the Original Xbox 360 Kinect were seemingly just rumours, Kinect users expect the feature to be included in future Windows devices. Microsoft researchers are attending the User Interface Software and Technology symposium to advertise their new invention- Digits, which is a wrist-worn sensor which accurately tracks finger movements- meaning there is little to no lag, which also requires no gloves.  However, the motion capture device is not being used for games. The inspiration for Digits stemmed form the Kinect, because Microsoft desired to create ‘natural 3D interactions with bare hands’, although the Kinect was slightly too limited to do this in the way in that it is not mobile and does not have the precise detail required to track the motion of individual fingers.  To realize their plans, Microsoft created a wrist-mounted device which includes an infrared camera and laser to ...

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OmniTouch allows interactive multitouch applications  on any everyday surfaces, whether its a wall or a notepad or even hands, arms or legs!  In addition to the projection system being depth-sensing, there is no instrumentation of the user or environment, allowing it to be used by anyone in any environment with no hassle. Furthermore, a wide variety of interactions are enabled- so you can ‘click’ or hover your fingers over the interactive area to command the OmniTouch.  The technology is being developed by Microsoft Researcher Andrew Wilson who will be demonstrating it live during the Verge Show (as shown below). It is clear that the technology needs much miniaturisation, but with smartphone based Pico projectors one can imagine this interface could eventually find some application in the real world. Via research.microsoft.com ...

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We have seen many interesting projects from Microsoft Research in the past, here is an another interesting now. Microsoft Research is working on creating large scale displays. If you want to create a giant HD display, it costs more and its complex to build. For example,  The 2,160-inch HD screen at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, cost $40 million and it has 30 million LED lights at 18 dots per inch involving multiple displays , each controlled by a separate PC. Microsoft’s vX solution involves 15 flatscreen displays with its own unique set of electronics and controlled by one PC. And it features 72 million pixels at 100 dots per inch so that you can enjoy the clarity of the picture even when you go near it. Microsoft Research is working on further scaling up this device tech. Here is the goal of the project, What would vX be used for? Blank and ...

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We have seen many interesting projects from Microsoft Research in the past and now you can add this project to the list as well. This is an interesting project which enables dual views in our normal LCD displays which we use everyday. This will enable new kind of scenarios where two person can share the same screen and enjoy different content. For example, two players can play games with their own views on the same screen. Read more on it from the link below. via: Microsoft.com/next ...

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Microsoft Research today announced the creation of its new Research Lab in New York City. This new lab will increase the research labs count to 13 at Microsoft. The new lab will be led by Jennifer Chayes, who becomes the managing director of both Microsoft Research New England, which she founded in July 2008, and Microsoft Research New York City. The lab will start with 15 researchers initially with 3 following founding members who are from Yahoo Research, David Pennock, who conducts research at the intersection of computer science and economics, is past chair of the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Electronic Commerce, the academic organization dedicated to topics in that area. Pennock will serve as assistant managing director of the new lab. Duncan Watts, a former full professor of sociology at Columbia University and a pioneer of modern network science, focuses on computational and experimental social ...

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Beamatron is a new research project from Microsoft in which virtual objects are projected in physical world.  It’s augmented reality concept that combines a projector and Kinect sensor on a pan tilt moving head – of the kind you may find in a nightclub. The setup utilizes KinectFusion to build a 3D model of a space and enables projected graphics to react in physically appropriate ways. For example, you can project a ball rolling over a surface or car driving over various surfaces on the floor, etc,.. Read more on this in the link below. via: Microsoft.com/next ...

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Microsoft Research today releases a desktop app that lets you create a new type of imagery called “Cliplets”. A still photograph is a limited format for capturing moments that span an interval of time. Video is the traditional method for recording durations of time, but the subjective “moment” that one desires to capture is often lost in the chaos of shaky camerawork, irrelevant background clutter, and noise that dominates most casually recorded video clips. Microsoft Research Cliplets is an interactive app that uses semi-automated methods to give users the power to create “cliplets”—a type of imagery that sits between stills and video from handheld videos. The tool provides a creative lens one can use to focus on important aspects of a moment by performing spatiotemporal compositing and editing on a video-clip input. Download it here. via: Microsoft.com/next   ...

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Microsoft Research is continuing its efforts into Natural User Interaction space. The latest project they demoed is a Interactive Wearable Multi-touch Projector. The project is in its early stage, but you can see the potential from the video above. People can project their computing interfaces over any surface and start interacting with it. Microsoft Research has done similar projects in the past with the name of wearable computing. Read more on this at Microsoft.com/next ...

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After Holoflector & 3D Desktop, its Illumishare now. Illumishare from Microsoft Research is what our future of communications should be. Illumishare allows us to share a physical physical or digital objects with others. How it does it ? IllumiShare uses a camera-projector pair where the camera captures video of the local workspace and sends it to the remote space and the projector projects video of the remote workspace onto the local space. With IllumiShare people can sketch together using real ink and paper, remote meeting attendees can interact with conference room whiteboards, and children can have remote play dates in which they play with real toys. Watch the video above and get blown away. Read more at Microsoft.com/next ...

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Microsoft Research is back in full form with its futuristic demos. After the Holoflector demo, Microsoft at its annual TechForum conference demoed its work on a concept similar to 3D Desktop. It has the ability to manipulate objects that lie behind the transparent screen – as well as objects on the screen with something called “view-dependent, depth-corrected gaze”. I don’t think I will be able to explain the whole concept in a clear way, just watch the video above. Amazing stuff ! via: Microsoft/Next ...

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Doubloon Dash is the second Facebook game designed and developed by Microsoft Research. The aim of the project is  to study how people participate in all-pay auctions. All-pay auctions are a particular kind of bidding mechanism in which all the participants have to pay the amount they bid no matter if they win the auction or not. The first Facebook game by MSR called Project Waterloo is already available for public. Read more on the games here and here. via: All About Microsoft ...

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Yesterday, Microsoft Research FUSE Labs tooks the wraps of its new project called Socl (So.cl). This is not anything to do with other social networks like Facebook, etc,. Its a research project focused on students (for now) to improve their collaboration among others. This is something like a place where Search meets Social or Social meets Search. The core part of it is to reimagine how our everyday communication and learning tools can be improved, by researching, learning and sharing in their everyday lives. I tried this service for almost 24 hours and it seems to be great fun. You would love to use it and explore what others are searching for. Signup for an invite at So.cl. ...

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Microsoft today took the wraps off its social network research project that focuses on Students.  So.cl (pronounced “social”) is an experimental research project, developed by Microsoft’s FUSE Labs, focused on exploring the possibilities of social search for the purpose of learning. So.cl combines social networking and search, to help people find and share interesting web pages in the way students do when they work together. So.cl helps you create rich posts, by assembling montages of visual web content. To encourage interaction and collaboration, So.cl provides rich media sharing, and real time sharing of videos via “video parties.” We expect students to continue using products such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other existing social networks, as well as Bing, Google and other search tools. We hope to encourage students to reimagine how our everyday communication and learning tools can be improved, by researching, learning and sharing in their everyday lives. You ...

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Microsoft has registered the domain name so.cl which will most probably act as the URL shortening domain for its upcoming social network research project Socl.com. Socl.com is a new internal project from Microsoft Fuse Labs which blends Search and Social. The Verge revealed some screenshots of the project few months ago and Microsoft then announced that the service may launch as a private invite only beta. via: Fusible ...

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