Microsoft has made the announcement at its Microsoft Research TechFest 2008 event in Redmond, that the Singularity Research Development Kit (RDK) 1.1 is now available for academic non-commercial use. You can download it from Microsoft's open source code project hosting website.
Singularity is a Microsoft Research project started in 2003 to build a highly-dependable microkernal operating system in which the kernel, device drivers, and applications are all written in managed code. More than 90% of the OS kernel is written in Sing#, an extension of the C# high-level programming language.
The key developers of Singularity, Galen Hunt and Jim Larus, have said that all current operating systems such as Windows, Linux and MacOS can be traced back to an operating system called Multics, which has its origins in the 1960s. In effect, current operating systems are still based, in part, on thoughts and criteria from 40 years ago.