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  • Blog Post: Balancing personal and creepy: on designing more human technology experiences

    “ Now that we can build nearly anything, what should we build and how should we build it, and for whom?” Those words came out of Bill Buxton’s mouth a few years ago while the two of us were talking about the role of design at Microsoft. The Kinect and Kinect SDK had been released...
  • Blog Post: Makerbot teams up to print 3D mechanical hands

    Last week we saw an amazing example of how 3D printing has the potential to help restore a person’s ability to walk. As cool as the 3D exoskeleton was, it’s just the tip of the iceberg for how 3D printing is being used directly, and indirectly, to improve the quality of life. As it turns...
  • Blog Post: Ford Goes Further with Big Data and Machine Learning

    If you read my CES trip report a couple weeks ago then you might recall my comment about Ford’s work in helping consumers optimize when they use electricity—a program they call MyEnergi Lifestyle . Since returning from Vegas I’ve stumbled across a few articles here and there that really...
  • Blog Post: Smartphones, sensors and the age of domestic drones

    In this month’s issue of Wired Magazine, editor Chris Anderson puts the spotlight on the burgeoning population of drones, but not those in the skies over Afghanistan or Iraq. The drones Chris is talking about are being built and created by hobbyists like himself, all around the world. There’s...
  • Blog Post: Haptics: That Special Touch

    I managed to bag an Arc Touch Mouse (above) a few days after arriving in Redmond – much to the annoyance of my colleagues – and it’s become the main rodent I use. It lightweight and small yet retains a good feel and has a rather excellent haptic strip instead of a scroll wheel. That’s...
  • Blog Post: Room-sized Computing on a Budget

    In yet another example of the Kinect effect , frog design took a couple of Microsoft Kinect for Windows sensors, a handful of devices and some light fixtures to explore the possibilities of room-sized computing. It’s a bit like the Microsoft Envisioning Center , though I like the name of their...
  • Blog Post: Nine Inch Nails takes Kinect on tour

    Twenty years into their career, Nine Inch Nails is still experimenting with cutting-edge technology in the studio and on stage. The band released an innovative new album last week, and has been using Kinect sensors to enhance their recent live performances. “There's a Kinect that handles motion...
  • Blog Post: Taking a Slow Approach to Technology

    One of the things I like about Richard Banks is that he's either involved in or comes across some of the most unique applications of technology. A great example of this is the work he's part of at Microsoft Research Cambridge around exploring the design implications of slow technology. Below are a couple...
  • Blog Post: Augmented Reality Book

    I stumbled across this Mark Lukas video and realised I've seen technology that can make this happen - recently in fact. Andy Wilson from Microsoft Research showed a technology called Lightspace at the UIST conference last month. The technology combines surface computing and augmented reality...
  • Blog Post: Nike+ Kinect Training: This is not a game

      My Nike Flyknit shoes arrived last week and they’re ready for a run out – but to be honest, I’m a bit of a fair weather runner and the rain has set in here in Seattle. Just in time though, Nike+ Kinect Training is available on Xbox. This is no game…no, no...
  • Blog Post: 2013: The Year of the “Alchemic Cloud”

    This is a guest post from Stefan Weitz , Director of Search at Microsoft Those who follow my many digital personas know I travel – a lot. That has many implications on my life, like how much stuff I want to lug around. Being constantly on the go means the time I have to actually live my life...
  • Blog Post: Making the world clickable

    A clickcable world is getting closer. It’s been a busy week for my friends over in Microsoft Tag – a few days ago they showed us how Tag is being used to make your food more interactive. Check out the Meyer Natural Beef below which is sporting a Tag. Scan the tag with the free Microsoft...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft TechFest 2013: 3-D Display with Haptic Feedback

    One theme that really stood out today is the use of 3-D—typically to scan physical objects and transform them into three-dimensional models on your computer. So one project that really stands out—both literally and figuratively—is the 3-D display with haptic feedback that Mike Sinclair...
  • Blog Post: Talking intelligent systems with MIT

    A few weeks ago I had the chance to sit down for a chat with Dr. Abel Sanchez , Executive Director at MIT’s Geospatial Data Center, to talk about the Internet of Things and its impact on the emergence of intelligent systems . We met at the recent Windows Embedded Executive Summit here in Seattle...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Research shows KinectFusion – it’s jaw dropping

    Those are Engadget's words , not mine as this Microsoft Research project was shown at SIGGRAPH this week. KinectFusion takes live depth data from a moving Kinect sensor and in real-time creates high-quality 3D models. The possibilities are huge – you can scan a whole room and its contents within...
  • Blog Post: Make Way for the Programmable World

    WIRED.com featured a great article last week on the Internet of things and it’s well worth a read if you haven’t done so already. Bill Wasik gave a thorough explanation of how we’ve reached the point where many of our devices have the capability of being connected, and it’s opened...
  • Blog Post: PSFK: The Future of Home Living

    Smart homes have been on the minds of many more people these days and PSFK recently weighed into the whole discussion with its Future of Home Living Report , in which they identified some of the coolest domestic applications of technology. Besides the Illumiroom , one of my favorites is a mirror that...
  • Blog Post: The Printing Dress

    Last week I profiled Sheridan Martin Small – an amazing creative mind within our Xbox incubation group. In doing so, I mentioned a project called The Printing Dress – a collaboration between Sheridan and Asta Roseway of Microsoft Research. The video above, courtesy of Electricfoxy , does...
  • Blog Post: The making of Xbox One’s powerful new time-of-flight sensing camera

    Read how a Silicon Valley-based hardware team paired up with Microsoft Research to create the Xbox One’s new time-of-flight camera, taking the console’s Kinect sensor to the next level of accuracy, resolution and power, in this post on the Official Microsoft Blog.
  • Blog Post: How many intelligent devices are in your life?

    I’ve talked about the Internet of Things several times here on Next at Microsoft, noting that more and more of the objects in our lives are becoming connected to the Internet and becoming “intelligent”. This intelligence will bring with it a number of things – technology that...
  • Blog Post: A More 'Intelligent’ Approach to Embedded Devices

    Anyone who’s spent much time on this site knows that the Internet of Things is one of my favorite topics. I suppose it’s because it speaks to how we can use technology to redefine what’s possible. And while a lot of the talk has been pretty general, a few people here are working on...
  • Blog Post: Will intelligent apparel lead to the gamification of sports?

    I had my first US college football experience last week and it was quite an experience. Now I understand all the excitement around virtual tailgate parties in Avatar Kinect . Back in my native UK the football (sorry, soccer) season is underway and in New Zealand the Rugby World Cup is reaching it’s...
  • Blog Post: Looking beyond CES at what’s next

    I was about to write a post that used CES as the backdrop to look at what’s next for technology but Sarah Rotman Epps from Forrester has already done a terrific job of covering much of what I had planned to with her post Beyond Tablets: The Next Five Computing Form Factors - so I’ll riff...
  • Blog Post: Big Data: Making “Magical” Things Possible

    In Silicon Valley Wednesday night, Microsoft hosted a panel discussion with execs from Facebook, Netflix and a few other companies. The topic was making big data easier to use for small businesses and start-ups. Doug Crets shared some highlights on the Official Microsoft Blog yesterday, along with this...
  • Blog Post: A world of sensors

    A friend helped me broaden my perspective on sensors recently - we often forget that they're all around us and immensely useful. They have even more potential though. Here's a really simple example: if you have an alarm in your home, you likely have motion sensors in each room already. These things have...
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