Microsoft Research Explores ‘State of the Art’

REDMOND, Wash. – March 6, 2012 –
TechFest, the annual Microsoft Research wow-fest at the Microsoft Conference Center, begins today.

The tech extravaganza includes 154 demos and displays of the latest work from Microsoft Research (MSR) labs around the world. TechFest also includes more than 24 lectures on key technology topics.

TechFest provides a forum for MSR to showcase its latest research and discuss some of the world’s most formidable technology challenges, and a summit for Microsoft employees from around the world to exchange ideas and collaborate with partners, customers and external researchers.

Jim Oker, director of program management for Microsoft Research, said TechFest helps build an understanding of “where the state of the art is.”

“It’s inspirational to think about the possibilities – to see ambitious and wildly different things, and to refresh curiosity,” Oker said.

This year, TechFest is the same abundant show-and-tell for grown-ups and technology lovers, but with more of a story. Natural user interface (NUI) and big data are examples of some of the larger themes that have emerged amid the projects and demos.

Oker said TechFest’s special themed areas take visitors from demos that show researchers’ theory work all the way through the specific application of these tools.

“What we hope this will do for attendees is tell a story that’s bigger than the sum of its parts,” Oker said.

Follow the conversation @MSFTResearch with #MSRTF12.