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Microsoft boards-up research lab amid more layoffs

Downsizing closes Microsoft Research facility in Mountain View, Calif.

Microsoft Research is shutting down its Mountain View, Calif., facility as part of a move that included a reported 2,100 more layoffs throughout the company.

Derek Murray, who identifies himself as a researcher of distributed systems at Microsoft Research on his Twitter account, tweeted that “Today they announced that the lab in Silicon Valley will be closing Friday.”

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Microsoft confirmed that the facility is closing but that some of the researchers would be offered jobs elsewhere at Microsoft Research, according to blogger Mary Jo Foley who broke the story.

The layoffs at the lab are part of a wider plan to reduce the headcount at Microsoft by about 18,000, many of them expected to be workers who became Microsoft employees when the company bought Nokia. Layoffs announced today total 160, but the total company-wide is 2,100, Foley says.

A Microsoft Research site about the Mountain View lab says the facility employs more than 75 researchers.

Microsoft Research has 11 other facilities worldwide that employed more than 1,100 researchers, according to its Web page.

Work at the one in Mountain View is described on the site like this: “Silicon Valley research work focuses on distributed computing and includes security and privacy, protocols, fault-tolerance, large-scale systems, concurrency, computer architecture, Internet search and services, and related theory.”

“Well, so long Microsoft Research Silicon Valley. It was nice while it lasted.”

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