Microsoft Research Blog

The Microsoft Research blog provides in-depth views and perspectives from our researchers, scientists and engineers, plus information about noteworthy events and conferences, scholarships, and fellowships designed for academic and scientific communities.

Most recent

  1. Data science and ML for human well-being with Jina Suh

    Episode 93, October 9, 2019 - Using technology to help us improve our health is nothing new: a quick web search returns hundreds of apps and devices claiming to help us get fit, quit smoking, master anxiety or just “find our center.” What is new is a serious cohort of researchers exploring how artificial emotional intelligence, or AEI, could help us understand ourselves better and, when used in concert with human caregivers, enhance our well-being.…

    October 9th, 2019

  2. Expanding scene and language understanding with large-scale pre-training and a unified architecture

    Making sense of the world around us is a skill we as human beings begin to learn from an early age. Though there is still much to know about the process, we can see that people learn a lot, both directly and indirectly, from observing and interacting with their environments and other people in them: an uncle points to a shiny red piece of fruit and tells his nephew it’s an apple; a teacher reads…

    October 8th, 2019

  3. MMLSpark: empowering AI for Good with Mark Hamilton

    Episode 92, October 2, 2019 - If someone asked you what snow leopards and Vincent Van Gogh have in common, you might think it was the beginning of a joke. It’s not, but if it were, Mark Hamilton, a software engineer in Microsoft’s Cognitive Services group, budding PhD student and frequent Microsoft Research collaborator, would tell you the punchline is machine learning. More specifically, Microsoft Machine Learning for Apache Spark (MMLSpark for short), a powerful…

    October 2nd, 2019

  4. Microsoft collaborates with SilverCloud Health to develop AI for improved mental health

    One in four of us, at some point in our lives, will be affected by a mental health condition. Good mental health and well-being are fundamental to our general health and quality of life. It enables us to build resilience against everyday stresses, to work productively, to have fulfilling relationships, and to experience life as meaningful. In recent years, the topic of mental health has become a major concern to society due to increases in…

    October 2nd, 2019

  5. Inclusive environments empower big dreams

    Don’t limit yourself. If someone else can do it, you can do it, too. Don’t get comfortable. If doing well is easy, it’s time to challenge yourself. Over the years, these two principles have guided Columbia University PhD student Adji Dieng in her career in AI and machine learning. Dieng, who was a Microsoft Research intern in 2016 and 2017, shared this advice and described her journey from Senegal to Columbia University on a Dean’s…

    October 1st, 2019

  6. Inside AR and VR, a technical tour of the reality spectrum with Dr. Eyal Ofek

    Episode 91, September 25, 2019 - Dr. Eyal Ofek is a senior researcher at Microsoft Research and his work deals mainly with, well, reality. Augmented and virtual reality, to be precise. A serial entrepreneur before he came to MSR, Dr. Ofek knows a lot about the “long nose of innovation” and what it takes to bring a revolutionary new technology to a world that’s ready for it. On today’s podcast, Dr. Ofek talks about the…

    September 25th, 2019

  7. Efficient inference for dynamical models using variational autoencoders

    Dynamical systems theory provides a mathematical framework for studying how complex systems evolve over time, such as the neurons in our brains, the global climate system, or engineered cells. But predicting how these systems will behave in the future or how they might respond to disruption requires an accurate model. Even writing down a model structure is complicated by the fact that the components of complex systems are often poorly understood or unknown. One must…

    September 23rd, 2019

  8. HCI, IR and the search for better search with Dr. Susan Dumais

    Episode 90, September 18, 2019 - Dr. Susan Dumais knows you have things to do, and if you need help finding stuff to get them done (and you probably do) then her long and illustrious career in search technologies has been worth it. Situated firmly in Louis Pasteur’s quadrant of the research grid (the square where you answer “yes” to both the quest for fundamental understanding and use-based applications) the Microsoft Technical Fellow, and Deputy…

    September 18th, 2019

  9. Helping first responders achieve more with autonomous systems and AirSim

    With inputs from: Elizabeth Bondi (Harvard University), Bob DeBortoli (Oregon State University), Balinder Malhi (Microsoft) and Jim Piavis (Microsoft) Autonomous systems have the potential to improve safety for people in dangerous jobs, particularly first responders. However, deploying these systems is a difficult task that requires extensive research and testing. In April, we explored complexities and challenges present in the development of autonomous systems and how technologies such as AirSim provide a pragmatic way to solve…

    September 16th, 2019

  10. Layer Trajectory BLSTM: New evolution enhances speech recognition technology

    Speech is a signal that can enable natural interaction between human and machine. In order to facilitate this exchange, machines have to be able to recognize what a human has spoken, both the words and the context in which those words appear. This is the task of speech recognition—a seemingly simple one from a human perspective but an incredibly difficult one for machines. For decades, researchers have been trying to develop algorithms to make speech…

    September 16th, 2019

  11. Bring your phones to the conference table: creating ad hoc microphone arrays from personal devices

    Recent advances in machine learning and signal processing, as well as the availability of massive computing power, have resulted in dramatic and steady improvement in speech recognition accuracy. Voice interfaces to digital devices have become more and more common. Lectures and online conversations can be transcribed using the live caption and translation features of PowerPoint, Microsoft Teams, and Skype. The speech technology community, including those of us at Microsoft, continues to innovate, pushing the envelope…

    September 13th, 2019

  12. Inside the Microsoft AI Residency Program with Dr. Brian Broll

    Episode 89, September 11, 2019 - In 2018, Microsoft launched the Microsoft AI Residency Program, a year-long, expanded research experience designed to give recent graduates in a variety of fields the opportunity to work alongside prominent researchers at MSR on cutting edge AI technologies to solve real-world problems. Dr. Brian Broll was one of them. A newly minted PhD in Computer Science from Vanderbilt University, Dr. Broll was among the inaugural cohort of AI residents…

    September 11th, 2019