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Microsoft hopes younger eyes have Office vision

When you have the most popular productivity software on the market what's next? If you're Microsoft then you start by asking the customers themselves what they want the next Office to be. Specifically the younger customers from 19 to 24.

When it comes to improving the spelling checker in Word or finding new ways to draw charts in Excel, Microsoft probably has things covered.

But to figure out the broad changes needed for its venerable Office software, Microsoft is turning to an Indian medical student, an aspiring architect from Kenya and 13 other young adults from across the globe. The young people, ages 19 to 24, are part of an "Information Worker Board of the Future" that will spend this week touring Microsoft's campus and discussing their ideas for the future of work and software.

Microsoft hopes the investment will pay off with some insight into how their flagship Office software needs to evolve. "We want them to tell us what we don't know," said Don Rasmus, a former Giga Information Group analyst who joined Microsoft last year to head up its Information Work Vision effort.

News source: C|Net News.com

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