Articles about microsoft research

Cool dude with big hair and thumbs up like Arthur Fonzarelli

Opposable thumbs make tablets more useful says Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research has come up with an interesting idea – user interfaces designed specifically for thumb-plus-stylus use on tablet computers. The company's brain box likes this idea because when you use a stylus-capable fondleslab you devote your strong hand to the task of wielding the stylus while your weaker hand gets the …
Microsoft's Minecraft Malmo

Microsoft urges PhD-grade devs to play Minecraft for money

Microsoft wants PhD researchers to pitch their bots into a Minecraft landscape, but it's not some simple “robot wars” remake: to win, your AI will have to learn to co-operate with humans. And you don't get to choose who you co-operate with: in Project Malmo, the other players your code works with will be randomly assigned. …

Picture this: An exabyte of cat pix in the space of a sugar cube of DNA

University of Washington and Microsoft Research boffins have successfully used DNA as an image store. Their argument is that although it's hard to work with, DNA has a couple of killer characteristics as a data store: the “raw” storage limit is an exabyte per cubic millimetre, and its storage half-life is more than 500 years …
Speedometer by Nathan E Photography, Flickr under CC2.0

MSFT boffins bust mobile data bottlenecks with iOS app

Microsoft Research boffins in Singapore and India have put up a novel idea: an app designed to identify where a smartphone's downloads are suffering and route around the problem without bothering the network operator. The researchers reckon the mobile network has forgotten one of the prime directives of the Internet: to route …

Microsoft throws crypto foes an untouchable elliptic curveball

While Washington mulls ways to make crypto less effective, the industry, thank heavens, continues to push in the other direction. Microsoft Research has just published an elliptic curve library it reckons is considerably faster than what's currently available. Outlined in this International Association for Cryptologic Research …
The two lenses side-by-side

Microsoft says Oculus Rift distorts world, grinds corrective lenses

Someone at Microsoft Research is apparently unimpressed with Oculus Rift's perspective on the world, so has corrected it with lenses that give you Microsoft's view of things. Redmond's vision is expressed in this little CAD file that's popped up at Microsoft Research, offering you all you need to give your Occulus the …
Padlocks by Simon Cocks Flickr CC2 license

Redmond promises even MORE cloudy crypto

Get ready for the spooks to howl: Microsoft Research has developed another layer of security to lock up customer data in the cloud. What the Redmond boffins dub "VC3" – Verifiable Confidential Cloud Computing – takes advantage of Intel's SGX command set to create a “lockbox” for customers running MapReduce computations in the …
Microsoft's Picco workplace playfulness experiment

Microsoft tests HALF-INCH second screen to spur workplace play

Microsoft Research has detailed a tiny device called “Picco” that pipes sketches to users to make the workplace more feel more intimate. Detailed here in a research paper titled “A Small Space for Playful Messaging in the Workplace: Designing and Deploying Picco”, Microsoft Research explains that Picco is “a tiny situated …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Jun 2014
Random numbers

Microsoft eggheads publish JavaScript crypto code for devs

Microsoft Research has published an under-development JavaScript crypto library, for exposure to developers and researchers interested in cloud and browser security. Designed to work with HTML5-compliant cloud services, the Microsoft Research JavaScript Cryptography Library uses the W3C WebCrypto API to expose crypto functions …
Lamport

Byzantine Generals co-boffin Lamport bags CompSci's 'Nobel prize'

Distributed systems researcher Leslie Lamport has been awarded the A.M. Turing award, computer science's equivalent to the Nobel Prize. The award for 2013 was given to Lamport "for imposing clear, well-defined coherence on the seemingly chaotic behavior of distributed computing systems." Another way of putting it is: no …
Jack Clark, 18 Mar 2014

Microsoft Research co-develops cloud data scrambler

Researchers from Microsoft, the University of California, Irvine and Brown University have proposed a technology that should make it harder to derive value from data stored in the cloud. In a paper titled The Melbourne Shuffle: Improving Oblivious Storage in the Cloud, authors Olga Ohrimenko, Michael T. Goodrich, Roberto …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Feb 2014
We don't know if Marissa made this herself

Microsoft releases wonderfully loopy experimental GIF-jiggler

Microsoft Research has released something rather interesting: a GIF-maker that analyses the patterns in a video and re-orders discrete sections of the frames to produce the best possible output. Redmond has been showing off the software's capabilities for a few months now, with this paper and the video below describing its …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Nov 2013
RoboCop

A use for the Internet of Things: ROBOCOP Neighbourhood Watch

LADIS 2013 The Internet of Things may be a young field, but researchers are already cooking up a filesystem to simplify how devices share information with one another, which could lead to community-backed services such as an automated neighborhood watch. One effort involving eggheads from Microsoft Research and the University of Texas at …
Jack Clark, 5 Nov 2013
Photo of a vintage analog modem with an acoustic coupler

SQUEEEEE! Microsoft goes retro with pay-by-squawk NFC tech

Researchers at Microsoft Research India have proposed a new form of near-field communication (NFC) for mobile phones, one that even works on devices that lack any kind of specialized NFC hardware. The technique is a modern throwback to the earliest days of computer communications, and a big clue to how it works can be found in …
Neil McAllister, 16 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Microsoft demos real-time English to Chinese translation

In fiction Douglas Adams had his babel fish and Star Trek had the communicator, but Microsoft Research has been demoing an actual real-time English to Mandarin translation engine that works within seconds. Microsoft's chief research officer Rick Rashid showed off the technology at the company's Asian 21st Century Computing …
Iain Thomson, 8 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Microsoft debuts Holodesk to fiddle with balls

Microsoft has released a video of what’s it’s calling a Holodesk – a 3D holographic display that allows users to virtually pick up and use software constructs such as balls and blocks. The system, built by Microsoft Research in Cambridge, uses a webcam and Kinect technology to follow the user’s hands and face, adds a set of …
Iain Thomson, 20 Oct 2011
For Sale sign detail

US spooks to build 60 megawatt data center

The Obama administration might have been wrestling mightily with a recalcitrant Republican Congress high on strong tea over the US government's fiscal 2012 budget, which had tens of billions of dollars in spending slashed, but the one thing that both Democrats and Republicans can agree on is that the National Security Agency …
The Register breaking news

Microsoft's Cambridge boffins to up sticks in 2012

Microsoft Research Microsoft's UK research arm in Cambridge, England is moving home after more than 10 years occupying the Roger Needham Building on J J Thomson Ave. The company is transferring its 150 lab boffins - and up to 90 interns during the busy summer months - to Station Road in 2012 when the firm's current lease will be up. Microsoft …
Kelly Fiveash, 5 May 2010

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