Microsoft announces the creation of Microsoft Research AI, a dedicated unit within its global Microsoft Research division that will focus exclusively on how to make the company’s software smarter, now and in the future.
The difference now, Microsoft Research Labs director Eric Horvitz tells Business Insider, is that this new organization will bring roughly 100 of those experts under one figurative roof. By bringing them together, Microsoft’s AI team can do more, faster.
Horvitz describes the formation of Microsoft Research AI as a “key strategic effort;’ a move that is “absolutely critical” as artificial intelligence becomes increasingly important to the future of technology.
Artificial intelligence carries a lot of power, and a lot of responsibility.
That’s why Microsoft has also announced the formation of Aether (AI and ethics in engineering and research), a board of executives drawn from across every division of the company, including lawyers. The idea, says Horvitz, is to spot issues and potential abuses of AI before they start.
Similarly, Microsoft’s AI design guide is designed to help engineers build systems that augment what humans can do, without making them feel obsolete. Otherwise, people might start to feel like machines are piloting them, rather than the other way around. That’s why it’s so key that apps like Cortana feel warm and relatable.
“Oh my goodness, those computers better talk to us in a way that’s friendly and approachable,” says Microsoft General Manager Emma Williams, in charge of the group behind the design guide. “As people, we have the control.”
Source: Business Insider