Few days back, we reported about a Microsoft patent which described about a system displaying rich presentation taskbar buttons for a corresponding application. It seems this feature may be coming to Windows 9/Threshold in some form or the other. Today, Neowin reported few details about the upcoming version of Windows based on their sources within Microsoft. We already know that Windows Threshold will allow desktop users to avoid the current Start Screen by using the new Start Menu that will have Live Tiles. Also, some versions of Windows Threshold shipping for smaller tablets will not have desktop mode at all. Here is the summary of what Neowin reported today, Windows Threshold Desktop will have modern and more flat design than current Windows 7/Windows 8 design. Icons in the task bar are interactive, described as ‘mini Live Tiles’ by their source. Microsoft is toying with glance-and-go style functionality for the taskbar too. Read about it more here. Cortana ...

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At Microsoft Research Faculty Summit, Microsoft revealed their new project called ‘Adam’. Project Adam is a deep-learning system modeled after the human brain that has greater image classification accuracy and is 50 times faster than other systems in the industry. Microsoft ran the benchmark test called ImageNet 22K, the Adam neural network tops the performance numbers of the Google Brain, a system that is behind the services across. This benchmark test includes a database of 22,000 types of images, and only Adam and Google Brain are among the few artificial intelligence models that can handle this massive amount of input. Microsoft is looking to use Adam to provide lots of applications for users such as the ability to get information about anything just by pointing out your mobile camera and more. Microsoft even brought dogs on to the stage and demoed the system in which the mobile camera recognized the dog breed when pointed at the dog. Lee believes Adam could ...

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We already know that Microsoft is working on bringing Cortana to Windows platform. Microsoft’s Marcus Ash (Group Program Manager for Windows Phone – Cortana) and Rob Chambers (Group Program Manager, Applications and Services Group) revealed during a panel that Cortana will move beyond the phone. And a job listing from Microsoft also pointed out the same. They were looking for members to redefine the personalization experience on Windows and to help create serendipitous moments of discovery and satisfaction for the users and enable signature experiences that make Windows your indispensable companion in the real world. Today, an old Microsoft Research video was discovered which shows an early prototype of a automated personal assistant called Louise built to work on Windows. Project Louise is an ongoing, multiyear prototyping effort to build an automated personal assistant. This demo highlights the Louise Personal Assistant serving as a conversational natural user interface (NUI): multi-modal ...

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Last month, Bing team rolled out a new feature in which when a user search for “World Cup Predictions”, or any group matches (both preliminary as well as later in the single elimination rounds) they will display the chances of each respective team to win. This feature became quite popular as Cortana team integrated the same into Windows Phone. With the power of Bing, Cortana got all its predictions correct till now in this world cup. Google also joined the prediction arena with their own prediction for all the matches. Recently, Google got Germany – France match result wrong as Germany won over France making their prediction wrong. Meanwhile, Corana got it correct. Today, Google explained why they got it wrong in their blog post, read it below. And so it went in the quarterfinals. We gave France a 69% chance, but we were wrong. Germany defeated France 1 to 0. ...

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Microsoft announced Cortana digital assistant with the launch of Windows Phone 8.1 developer preview. Lots of users are already using it in beta form around the world even though Microsoft has officially restricted the launch to the US. How about Cortana experience on Windows or Xbox? Microsoft has not revealed any info about it so far, but it is as obvious thing for Microsoft to expand this personalized service to all their platforms. Recently, WPC forum member claiming to be a Microsoft employee revealed the following, Cortana on Xbox One and Windows 8 PC’s Yes, it’s coming, no, no ETA but I have been testing it on XB1 and it’s very neat, especially when playing a Halo game. Microsoft’s Marcus Ash (Group Program Manager for Windows Phone) and Rob Chambers (Group Program Manager, Applications and Services Group) was at SMX Advanced conference talking about Cortana hinted the same, Will Cortana jump ...

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Microsoft Bing turns five today. Microsoft rebranded Live Search as Bing on June 3rd 2009 with a fresh approach to search helping people to do more, not just search more. Microsoft today thanked the millions of people who use Bing every day. Microsoft said that they never forget that what they build isn’t just for the sake of computer science or commerce but because it can positively impact people in ways we’ve only barely dreamt of. So what’s next for Bing? Read it below. What’s Next: The idea of launching a browser, going to a website, and typing in a search box? That’s so 2009. The best is not yet to come but on the imminent horizon. As the world of devices constantly changes and new form factors come into play there will be a need to better use information, either by seeking it out or having it pushed to ...

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A new rumor emerged online today reveals some information about the Microsoft’s future product roadmap. The information is believed to be from a Microsoft employee who worked on these projects. It reveals that the next major version of Windows called Windows 9 and Windows Phone 9 will be released in preview during Q2-Q3 time frame in 2015. Also, this update will include the following improvements/features, One User Experience Cloud Services Metro UI System protection(Windows Defender) Validation Improved(Windows activation) OneDrive Cortana While we have no information on what the above list means, we can probably guess Microsoft is working on improving them. Read more about it from the link below. Source: Myce Read previous rumor about Windows 9 here, New Rumors About Windows 8.2 and Windows 9. ...

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Microsoft revealed Cortana digital assistant for Windows Phone devices at BUILD developer conference. During a Reddit session, Joe hinted that Cortana may come to Windows devices too. As Microsoft has intentionally built Cortana to scale out to all the different domains, the goal is to support all types of human interaction—whether it’s speech, text, or gestures—across domains of information and function and make it as easy as a natural conversation. So, we can expect Cortana on Windows in the future. A recent Microsoft job listing has confirmed the same. It says that they need people to help them redefine the personalization experience on Windows using Cortana. Do you want to be part of the team that is building the next generation of Cortana? We are looking for strong and motivated developers to help shape the Evolution of the next generation of Microsoft’s Digital Assistant – Cortana! The landscape of digital ...

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Microsoft revealed the Cortana digital assistant platform at BUILD developer conference earlier this month. Behind the scenes, its Microsoft’s Bing platform that powers Cortana. Even though Cortana responds based on your intent and behavior now, MSR expects it to interact in an increasingly anticipatory, natural manner in the future. Microsoft Research detailed some of the technologies involved in building Cortana. Even though many of us would just categorize them under Artificial Intelligence label, Microsoft Research has detailed all of those technologies involved. Speech recognition, Semantic/natural language processing, Dialogue modeling between human and machines, Spoken-language generation, Microsoft Research has used all of the above base technologies for a creating a virtual personal assistant based on the work they have done in different areas of personal-assistant technology. Cortana’s design philosophy is therefore entrenched in state-of-the-art machine-learning and data-mining algorithms. Furthermore both developers and researchers are able to use Microsoft’s broad assets across ...

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Few days back, WSJ reported about Harry Shum, head of technology and research at Microsoft speaking at Think Next 2014 conference in Tel Aviv. Harry Shum said “We are now moving from the personal computer to personal computing.” Microsoft Research now has machine learning and artificial intelligence on top of its list and working on how a person interacts with a computer. Also, Microsoft is now investing heavily on invisible user interface technology in which the intelligent devices will know what you want before you tell them. Microsoft is investing heavily in “invisible user interface” technology, said Yoram Yaakobi, who heads up Microsoft’s research and development center in Israel. Yaakobi said people in the future won’t need to touch, type or speak to their devices — the devices will “know” what we want them to do before we ask. He called it “UI.Next.” “User interface started with the command prompt, ...

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Microsoft revealed Cortana for the first time at BUILD developer conference earlier this week. Bing information platform is the brain behind Cortana and if you want to know how it works to deliver answers to queries in near-realtime, watch this video above. Bing has built a scalable, distributed, and reliable functional reactive computing platform to efficiently evaluate standing queries over the world’s information streams in near-realtime. It is one of the major components of the Bing Information Platform that powers Cortana. There is also a smaller version of the stream processing engine that runs on all Windows Phone 8.1 devices. Bing engineers can easily write standing queries against the world’s information streams using LINQ. The set of functional operators that are supported is a core subset of those offered by Rx (Reactive Framework). Source: Microsoft ...

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Film site “One View With A Room” has a nice series on best films never made.  Among them was the Halo movie which would have been co-produced by Peter Jackson, of Lord of the Rings/Hobbit fame, and directed by Neill Blomkmap best known for District 9.  The script was written by Alex Garland most recently known for the highly successful Dredd 3D film.   What ultimately killed the project was Microsoft’s inexperience in the movie business coupled with a greedy and controlling movie studios Fox and Universal.  Here is an excerpt: In amongst the dusty annals of the best films never made, one blockbuster lies atop the pile. Widely known and anticipated for the last 8 years, the ultimate videogame film/adaptation, and the one film that could never make the final jump to our cinema screens: Halo. So what if one of the biggest videogame franchise had made it to the big screen? ...

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Back in January, Microsoft announced the purchase of home automation startup R2 Studios and they absorbed some of the talent of the startup into their management. R2 Studios had several important home automation patents, and their technology was expected to be integrated into products at Microsoft’s Xbox Division at that time. Earlier this month, lots of information on Microsoft’s upcoming Cortana personal assistant leaked online. First, it was reported that Cortana will be the personal AI agent on Windows Phone devices that will come with Windows Phone Blue. Later, Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet reported that Cortana is more than a Windows Phone app. Cortana will be a shell that will be found on future Windows, Windows Phone and Xbox One operating systems. Cortana will be more than just an app that lets users interact with their phones more naturally using voice commands. Cortana is core to the makeover of the entire “shell” — the core services ...

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Yesterday, we saw a sudden burst of information about Microsoft’s next generation personal assistant codenamed ‘Cortana’. First, there was a report that Microsoft is planning to release it as part of Windows Phone 8.1 and it will take on Apple’s Siri. Later, there were some screenshots of the early prototype of Cortana running on a Windows Phone 8 device. The screenshots revealed that Cortana is more than a speech assistant, it takes lots of contextual data like location, wifi network, weather, calender appointments, etc to assist you. Cortana will be able to learn and adapt over time as it is relying on machine-learning technology and the “Satori” knowledge repository which now powers Bing. Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet reports that Cortana is not just a Windows Phone app, instead it is a shell that will span across Windows PCs, Tablets, Phones and Xbox. She reported the below to explain it. ...

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