• Next for Rothschild: Bringing Rationality to March Madness

    Posted by Rob Knies

    David Rothschild

    March Madness, they call it, but David Rothschild is taking things to new extremes.

    Rothschild, an economist from Microsoft Research New York City, has been making a name for himself in the past few years. In 2012, he correctly predicted 50 of 51 Electoral College outcomes in the U.S. presidential race. Last month, his models accurately forecasted the winners in 21 of the 24 categories in the 86th annual Academy Awards.

    Now, for the first time, he is applying his prognosticative powers to the Big Dance, the 2014 NCAA men’s basketball tournament. With Selection Sunday complete and with bracket in hand, Rothschild will be following every step of the spectacle, beginning March 18 and continuing all the way through to the April 7 championship game.

  • Advance Your Presentation with Your Phone

    Posted by Rob Knies

    Office Remote logo

    Making a business presentation can be daunting. Interaction with the audience might require you to change the flow of your presentation by jumping to a different section in your PowerPoint presentation. Or you might want to show supporting evidence in an Excel or Word document. Either you’ve faced these challenges or you’ve seen somebody else address them, but you know the drill.

    With Office Remote, a collaboration between Microsoft Research and the Microsoft Office engineering team, you can manage such modern presentation flows from the palm of your hand.

    “Office Remote turns your phone into a smart remote that interacts with Microsoft Office on your PC,” says Bert Van Hoof, an Office group program manager. “The app lets you control Word, Excel, and PowerPoint from across the room so you can walk around freely during presentations.”

  • An Early Peek into the Oscars’ Envelopes

    Posted by Rob Knies

    Film reels

    It’s mid-February, and the nominations for the 86th Academy Awards have been public for a month. Fans are scrambling to watch all the nominated films they can find. Film buffs debate the talents of Blanchett and Bullock until closing time. Excited partygoers and party throwers are planning feverishly.
    David Rothschild, too, has his own Oscars preparations in the works. He’s not watching the movies, though. Instead, he’s focusing on the data associated with them.
    You might recall that Rothschild, an economist from Microsoft Research New York City, made his initial foray into predicting the winners of the Oscars in 2013—and that his forecasts proved accurate in 19 of the 24 Academy Awards categories.
    Now, he is attempting to improve upon that already gaudy record in the days leading to March 2, when members of the film community gather at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre for the opening of the envelopes from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

  • Bing Code Search Makes Developers More Productive

    Posted by Rob Knies

    Yi Wei uses Bing Code Search

    Some people, it seems, are simply born to be computer-science researchers.

    Take Youssef Hamadi, for example. Earlier this week, he was asked a question about challenges he had encountered during a research project. His response began by sharing this revealing nugget:

    “As a kid, I remember reading that 70 percent of the code written every day is not new,” he recalled. “This is one of the reasons why I decided to become a researcher: to write innovative code every day.”

    Youssef Hamadi was born for the Bing Code Search project.

  • LampsonFest: Celebrating a Computing Legend

    Posted by Rob Knies

    Butler Lampson

    It’s a mouthful. The citation for the A.M. Turing Award presented to Butler Lampson 22 years ago reads as follows:

    For contributions to the development of distributed, personal computing environments and the technology for their implementation: workstations, networks, operating systems, programming systems, displays, security, and document publishing.

    As amazing as it might seem, Lampson, indeed, has made seminal contributions to all of these foundational computing advances. His career is as accomplished as imaginable. Oh, the stories that could be told …

    On Feb. 13, they will be.