From AI and data science to cryptography: Microsoft researchers offer 16 predictions for ’16

Last month, Microsoft released “Future Visions,” an anthology of short stories written by some of today’s top science fiction writers based in part on the writers’ access to Microsoft researchers and their labs. The eBook is available for free from Amazon and other sites.

Today, we offer an anthology of a different sort. This is a collection of predictions from 16 leaders and leading thinkers within our Technology and Research organization.

As we turn the page on a year when we’ve entered what Microsoft Research NExT corporate vice president Peter Lee calls “a new Golden Age of technological advancement,” we thought it would be instructive to get a sense for what lies ahead, not only next year, but 10 years from now as well.

Microsoft Research has more than 1,000 scientists and engineers who work across multiple disciplines in research labs around the world, so this list isn’t exhaustive, but hopefully you find it insightful.

2016 represents a milestone of sorts for Microsoft’s research arm. It marks the 25th year since its founding in 1991 by Nathan Myhrvold, who argued in a 21-page document sent to Bill Gates that Microsoft needed “to invest in our future by doing more work in research and technology creation.”

That investment has paid significant dividends, for Microsoft, the industry and society. Perhaps at a time when as MIT President Rafael Reif has argued “we leave a lot of innovation ketchup in the bottle,” the company’s research investment is more important than ever before.

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Source: Microsoft News

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