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.

  1. MSR-FAPESP Workshop Focuses on Multidisciplinary, Data-Driven Environmental Science

    On November 11 and 12, 2010, an international group of distinguished researchers met in São Paulo, Brazil, to expand ongoing environmental research on the Brazilian tropical rainforest ecosystem. The workshop built upon the Sensor Nets in Tropical Forests, a pilot project that deployed a sensor net in a 1 km2 area of forest in Serra do Mar, Ubatuba, southeast of Brazil. The workshop was sponsored by Microsoft Research-FAPESP Institute for IT Research, a joint venture…

    November 18th, 2010

  2. Brazilian Researcher Wins Coveted Rigo Award

    Professor Maria Cecília Calani Baranauskas, of the Institute of Computing at the University of Campinas (IC-Unicamp), was named co-winner of the 2010 Rigo Award, the prestigious biennial honor bestowed by Association of Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Design Communication (AMC SIGDOC) on researchers who have made outstanding contributions in the realm of communications design. Baranauskas was honored for her groundbreaking research in human-computer interactions, including her work funded by the Microsoft Research-FAPESP Institute for…

    November 8th, 2010

  3. Annual PopTech Conference Brims with Innovative Ideas

    Amazing people working to make the world a better place—that pretty much encapsulates the presentations at the recent PopTech conference in Camden, Maine. A network of cutting-edge thinkers from many disciplines, PopTech fosters deep, world-changing collaborations. And in a world where science often receives short shrift in the popular media, the annual PopTech conference puts a spotlight on the social impact of science. One of the highlights of the conference was the inauguration of the…

    November 2nd, 2010

  4. Open Science, Open Software

    Here in External Research, we collaborate with dozens of computer and research scientists around the world. Through these collaborations, we regularly ask the question, "How can software make you a better scientist?"This seemingly simple question has evoked many exciting answers - and indeed drives the Research Accelerators we choose to incubate for the community.Open ScienceScientists operate on a number of platforms, use a number of languages, and have to deal with many different types of…

    October 19th, 2010

  5. Enhancing Multilingual Content in Wikipedia

    By Douglas Gantenbein, Senior Writer, Microsoft News Center Wikipedia has become one of the world’s largest and perhaps most powerful information repositories. But it is heavily English-centric. Making Wikipedia more multilingual inspired a Microsoft Research India team to develop a tool called WikiBhasha, which was launched Oct. 18. WikiBhasha—“Wiki,” signifying its community-oriented approach; “Bhasha,” a Sanskrit word meaning “language”—features a content-creation platform that combines linguistic services, such as machine translation, with a Wikipedia-friendly content editor.…

    October 18th, 2010

  6. Winner of the Jim Gray eScience Award Announced

    By Tony Hey, corporate vice president of the External Research Division of Microsoft Research One of the high points of the annual eScience Workshop is the presentation of the Jim Gray Award to a researcher who has made an outstanding contribution to the field of data-intensive computing.  I'd like to say a bit more about Jim and why we've named an award after him, but first, here's the identity of this year's winner: Philip Bourne.…

    October 12th, 2010

  7. New Technologies Help Healthcare and Environmental Sciences “Scale Up”

    Microsoft Research's 7th annual eScience Workshop is in full swing this week in lovely Berkeley, California. This event has brought together over 200 scientists from diverse fields (and diverse geographies), all united around their interest in using data-intensive science to advance their research. The theme of this year's workshop is "Scaling the Science," which is all about understanding processes at the molecular level and then scaling them up to larger systems-say, the human body or…

    October 8th, 2010

  8. UIST Showcases Novel Interfaces

    By Janie Chang, Writer, Microsoft Research Hallway conversations at UIST 2010 can sound like planning discussions for science-fiction-movie special effects, buzzing with terms such as “wearable computing,” “augmented reality,” and “smart rooms.” UIST, the Association for Computing Machinery’s (ACM’s) Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology, brings together researchers and practitioners of new user interfaces. Taking place in New York City from Oct. 3 to 6, the event features presentations and demos that cover topics…

    October 4th, 2010

  9. Microsoft Makes Its Presence Felt at GHC

    This week, technology-minded women from the across the United States have descend on Atlanta for the annual Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) of Women in Computing, an annual conference that spotlights women’s contributions in computer science, information technology, research, and engineering. Named for the legendary computer scientist, U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, past GHCs have drawn 1,500 or more participants and dozens of corporate sponsors. The 2010 GHC runs from September 28 through October 2.…

    September 28th, 2010

  10. New Redmond Lab Head Seeks Elegance

    By Rob Knies, Senior Editor, Microsoft Research Peter Lee is a bit of a daredevil, having pursued race-car driving in his youth. He’s also a fervent believer in the importance of finding beautiful solutions to computer-science challenges. And, as of Sept. 27, he’s a Microsoft distinguished scientist and the new managing director of Microsoft Research Redmond. Lee, 49, follows Rico Malvar, who has been named Microsoft Research’s chief scientist and is chartered with helping set…

    September 28th, 2010

  11. Software Aids Language Learners

    By Gary Alt, Writer, Microsoft Imagine mining the web to learn a language. No, not the jargon of webspeak, where IMHO means “in my humble opinion” or F2F is “face to face,” but real, spoken languages, such as Spanish, Hindi, or Japanese. That’s the notion that intrigued Ming Zhou, Matt Scott, and their colleagues at Microsoft Research Asia as they studied how the web’s zillions of words, in scores of languages, could be utilized for…

    September 27th, 2010

  12. Surface + Robotics = Life-Saving Possibilities

    In the realm of applied research, perhaps nothing is more satisfying than working on projects that can help save lives.  Such is the case with a unique project at the University of Massachusetts Lowell that combines Microsoft Surface and Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio in a Human-Robot Interaction (HRI) application to create novel remote controls for rescue robots.  To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time these two technologies have been used together—tell…

    September 27th, 2010