Friday, October 23, 2009

700 Students Turn Out for Windows 7 Launch at Microsoft NERD

I dropped in on the Microsoft NERD Center for an impromptu happy hour with Lili Cheng, Microsoft's new General Manager of the Future Social Experiences (FUSE) Labs and had to push my way through some 700 college students who were camped out in the lobby trying to get into the Windows 7 launch party on the 11th floor. I proceeded to the FUSE reception on the 14th floor.

The FUSE Labs represents the consolidation of three previously independent research and lab initiatives (Creative Systems Group, Startup Lab, Rich Media Lab) into a single applied development team. Their goal is designing, developing and releasing new applications and services that address the rich, real-time and social nature of our everyday lives.

At the FUSE Labs reception I ran into Microsoft Research Managing Director Jennifer Chayes. According to Chayes, Microsoft Research New England (which opened in July 2008) focuses on interdisciplinary work, integrating the more mathematical and algorithmic sciences with both the social sciences and aspects of the biomedical sciences. Their work includes applied projects in areas such as economics, social media, and health care, as well as more theoretical projects in areas such as mathematics and cryptography.

I confess that I dropped by the 11th floor on my way out. A full house of students were eating, playing Rock Band and generally having a good time.

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