Open dialogue about standards, open source, and interoperability at Microsoft


  • Spotlight on Microsoft Research: Get to Know the Earth with FetchClimate

    Posted by Openness Team

    This week more one billion people in 192 countries are taking action to advocate for the planet -- cleaning up cities, planting trees, educating communities, and much more. Yesterday, the Official Microsoft Blog celebrated these global environmental sustainability efforts, including projects underway across Microsoft to use technology to address environmental challenges and attain a clean energy future.

     One noteworthy project, FetchClimate, is helping scientists and non-scientists alike better understand the world around them.

    FetchClimate makes locating environmental information as easy as searching for a hotel or coffee shop online. Just draw a box around the geographic area you’re interested in, select the environmental information you want, and view the data on Bing Maps within seconds.

    What used to take researchers hours, days, or even weeks can now be done at the speed of thought – by anyone. FetchClimate runs in the Microsoft Azure cloud, meaning there is no physical limit on how much information can be added. You can view historical environmental data, as well as look into the future, including forecast data from the latest climate simulation experiments.

  • Open Door Policy: Brady Gaster on Coding like a Vampire and Making the Microsoft Cloud Open

    Posted by Tara Grumm
    Senior Manager, Worldwide Marketing & Operations

     Brady Gaster (@bradygaster) is a Microsoft Azure Program Manager and the former host of Channel 9’s Web Camps TV, who focuses on building tools that make it easier for web developers to benefit from the cloud. His recent interests involve connecting devices like the Kinect, Netduino, and robotics platforms to Microsoft Azure, as well as finding creative ways to use SignalR, the groundbreaking open source persistent HTTP abstraction. Brady took a break from all things .NET, ASP.NET, Web API, SignalR, Kinect, microcontrollers, C#, and Java to chat with us on his work to ensure Microsoft’s cloud platform is open.

    What’s your favorite technology innovation?

    This is a great question, and the answer is part of the reason I’m at Microsoft.

    SignalR, a library for ASP.NET developers, makes it incredibly simple to add real-time web functionality to your applications and is one of my favorite technologies created in the last five years. It has an interesting history, and I feel fortunate to have witnessed its creation and maturing.

    Two guys at Microsoft were on separate teams, but both were excited about the possibility for real-time web functionality for applications. They started meeting in their free time discussing the potential and eventually created SignalR. In the beginning it was just a pet project, but over the course of a year, it became the most popular .NET project on GitHub. From its inception, SignalR was an open source project.

  • CEO Satya Nadella and Others Discuss How to Transform Data into Action

    Posted by Openness Team

    Big data. Small data. All data. There is an ever-expanding volume of data inside enterprises and across the web. The potential is endless – from predicting election results to preventing the spread of epidemics. The trick is how to harness data to drive business advantages or in the case of government, improve transparency and services for citizens.  

    Tomorrow, April 15th,  you can tune in online for live keynotes by CEO Satya Nadella, COO Kevin Turner and CVP Quentin Clark to learn more about how to transform data into insights and action. Hope you can join us at 10am PDT / 1pm EST tomorrow!


  • Microsoft Spectrum Observatory Opens Up Wireless Data

    Posted by Openness Team

    Spectrum, the airwaves over which wireless devices communicate, is increasingly in demand throughout the world. As mobile broadband access is expanding and unprecedented numbers of smart devices come online, efficient use of wireless spectrum becomes increasingly important.

    The Microsoft Spectrum Observatory was created to provide an intuitive presentation of wireless spectrum usage in locations around the world. Usage information is recorded through monitoring stations and is stored and processed for visualization through the Microsoft Azure cloud. The data is then easily accessible and freely available to the public.

  • 12,427 Miles on a Motorcycle: Make Web Not War Announces Open Government Tour

    Posted by Openness Team

    Pietro MotorcycleThis summer, Richard Pietro, a member of the Make Web Not War Community (MWNW), is hitting the road for a 90-day motorcycle trek across Canada to raise civic awareness and engagement through an Open Government Tour.

    “Make Web Not War has always had the goal of building an open data super site for Canada because the challenge we have is there’s so much information out there, but there’s not one place where we can find everything we need to know in Canada,” says Keith Loo, a Strategy Lead for Microsoft’s Openness team in Canada, and the driving force behind Make Web Not War. “So the goal is to put everything in one place, and the Open Gov tour does that.”