MS Future Forum

Today, at an event celebrating the first decade of Microsoft Research, Gates and senior researchers showcased leading-edge technologies from the company's basic research facilities and discussed the future of computing.

[Microsoft] revealed examples of the advanced projects underway at Microsoft Research. These explore fundamental boundaries in a variety of technology areas and include:

  • A Sensing Pocket PC that alters handheld device applications based on sensors that detect touch, tilt and motion.
  • Chinese text-to-speech software that could improve productivity for Asian users.
  • 3-D art reconstruction software that builds 3-D models from Renaissance paintings or other images.
  • SideShow, a workgroup-communications tool that utilizes desktop cameras to determine a user's status and creates an enhanced version of a task bar and buddy list.
  • And, face-mapping software that quickly scans a person's face using a simple desktop camera and constructs a 3-D model for uses such as personal communications, e-commerce sites or games.

Microsoft researchers are generally focused on long-term goals extending three to 10 years beyond current product cycles, yet technology from the research division has impacted almost every existing Microsoft(R) product.

Founded in 1991, Microsoft Research is dedicated to conducting both basic and applied research in computer science and software engineering... [it] now employs more than 600 people, focusing on over 40 areas of computing. Researchers in five facilities on three continents collaborate with leading academic, government and industry researchers to simplify and enhance technology in such areas as speech recognition, user-interface research, programming tools and methodologies, operating systems and networking, graphics, natural language processing, and mathematical sciences. During the current fiscal year, Microsoft will invest a total approaching $5 billion (U.S.) in research and development. More information about Microsoft Research can be found at

News source: CBS MarketWatch

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