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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella: Mixed reality, AI and quantum computing key technologies for future

Nadella touched upon technologies which have the potential to bring about change in the future.

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella who is on a two-day visit to India today talked about his book titled, Hit Refresh. The event, which was co-hosted by former cricketer Anil Kumble, served as a platform for other key figures from the entrepreneurial world to talk about their ‘hit refresh’ moments which changed their personal and professional lives.

At the event, Nadella also touched upon technologies which have the potential to bring about change in the future. “There are three real foundation technologies which are going to shape the years and decades to come. These are Mixed Reality, Artificial Intelligence, and Quantum Computing,” Nadella said.

Microsoft has been pursuing the mixed reality dream for quite sometime now. It is already working on HoloLens – a hardware that blends the real with the virtual using holographic technology. The idea here is to mix both the VR and AR experiences into something which allows you to interact with the digital content through holograms while sitting in the real environment.

“If you look at computer history, it is all about enhancing the man-machine interface. From character mode to graphic interface, to touch screen, to voice input. The experience is now much more natural and intuitive to get more people to use computing. But the ultimate experience, in my mind, is what I describe as ‘mixed reality.’ The idea that you can now have both the virtual and the real world in front of your eyes and blend the two, for me, is the realization of the digital mirror being there always” he said.

“I am very excited to see what we do with HoloLens, in education, in health, in how people work in VR, and so on.” Nadella further said that the idea of teleportation is sort of possible now and it is no more a sci-fi concept. ALSO READ: Microsoft Office 365, Kaizala app helping Indian firms go digital: Satya Nadella

Artificial intelligence or AI, which today powers a lot of ‘smart’ things around us, from phones to lights, is seen as a necessary evil by the technology world. For brands such as Facebook, Apple and Google, AI is indispensable. On the other hand, Tesla’s Elon Musk and renowned physician Stephen Hawking believe, AI could possibly spell doom of mankind.

For Microsoft, the technology which uses machine learning algorithm to create better user experiences is the foundation technology to shape the future. “The second key technology of future is data and AI. The currency of our time will be the ability to collect data, but more importantly, to put reason over it for artificial intelligence,” Nadella said. “Whether it is education outcome, health outcome, we will be fundamentally dependent on how good are we in creating these data feedback loops for AI.” ALSO READ: Ola cabs, Microsoft to build new connected vehicle platform

Lastly, quantum computing is seen by Microsoft as one of the pillars shaping tomorrow’s digital world. “We celebrate our technological advancements but we also need to see the challenges which are computational in nature but not yet solved. We are also trying to bring quantum computing which is going to be a longer-term horizon which is going to bring together math, physics, and computer science for a new quantum computer.”

  • Published Date: November 7, 2017 9:26 PM IST