Posted by Fred HumphriesVice President, U.S. Government Affairs, Microsoft
There is little dispute about the rapidly growing demand for wireless broadband connectivity and the strain it places on wireless networks. Policymakers can help to find more spectrum to enable the many devices consumers use to connect to the Internet and to each other. To help industry keep pace with consumer demand, policymakers must act quickly to adopt incentive auction policies, drive the deployment of smart radio technology and facilitate more unlicensed spectrum use including use of the “TV white spaces”.
Consumer demand for wireless broadband connectivity is rapidly growing. In a Staff Technical Working Paper, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reported an increase of more than 450 percent in the amount of mobile data consumers used per mobile line between the first quarter of 2009 and the second quarter of 2010, and projected demand to grow to between 25 and 50 times current levels within five years. At the same time, consumers and network operators increasingly use unlicensed spectrum technologies to access wireless broadband. Mobile data offloaded to Wi-Fi hot spots from the networks of mobile operators is expected to reach almost 90 percent by 2015.
Posted by Andrea L. TaylorDirector of Community Affairs in North America, Microsoft
When Gloria Pulido lost her job, she lost her only source of income and ended up living in her car with her teenage son. As Gloria looked for community resources to help get her life back on track, she discovered the Microsoft Elevate America state voucher program.
Through a partnership between Microsoft and California, she was able to take no-cost Microsoft Office training and a Microsoft Office Specialist certification exam, which she successfully passed. By combining these new skills with her existing experience she turned a part-time job into a full-time position, and, more importantly, a new home.
Gloria’s story is one of those included in a newly released report that shares the lessons we’ve learned from launching the Microsoft Elevate America voucher program in 32 states and the District of Columbia.
Posted by Jason AlbertAssociate General Counsel for IP Policy & Strategy, Microsoft
Today marks World Intellectual Property Day, an annual celebration of the role intellectual property plays in shaping the world around us. The theme for this year’s celebration is Designing the Future, with a focus on “the role of design in the marketplace, in society and in shaping the innovations of the future.”
Given that design protection has traditionally focused on physical products – the shape of Hershey’s Kisses or the VW bug – it might not be intuitively obvious why a software company should be excited about this form of IP. But designs play an increasingly important role in the technology sector. Whether it is the elegant physical design of a smartphone or the innovative user interface of a software application, good design drives market enthusiasm for technology products. And as more and more of our daily activities migrate online and to the cloud, designs will migrate from the shapes of things made in factories to the shapes of things rendered on computer screens.
Posted by Brad SmithSenior Vice President & General Counsel, Microsoft
Our state continues to face significant economic pressures, and even as the recession recedes, Washington’s employers and families still must confront increasingly intense global competition.
Microsoft has grown up here – Washington state is our home, and we want to see the state continue to be successful. It’s clear that Washington needs a balanced strategy, with measurable goals, to ensure citizens benefit from both solid economic opportunities and a great quality of life.
To that end, I’ve worked with other members of the Washington Roundtable to develop the Benchmarks for a Better Washington campaign.
Posted by Rob BernardChief Environmental Strategist, Microsoft
In the 40 years since the first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970, the annual event has become a time not only for individuals, but also for companies, government agencies and organizations of all sizes to affirm their environmental commitments.
At Microsoft, our environmental efforts occur 365 days a year. To add our unique contribution to the celebration of Earth Day, we wanted to take this opportunity to reflect and share our thoughts on how trends in information technology can help address the pressing energy and environmental sustainability challenges facing the world.
One of the things we’re most excited about is the shift to Internet-based computing services (cloud computing), which offer dramatic new ways to save energy and reduce the environmental impacts of IT.