Microsoft Research reveals BlindSight, Mischief and MySong

It's true that Microsoft often makes itself a target for a fat, easy flame. But sometimes even a blogger has to be nice and we can always count on Microsoft Research to offer up a bunch of fun, cool

projects that we love to write about. This week, Microsoft Research is showcasing some of its wares in Florence, Italy, at the CHI 2008 conference

Here are three projects that Microsoft Research seems especially proud to show off at the conference.

"BlindSight," written in collaboration with the University of California, San Diego, is a technology intended to give users access to data stored on their mobile phones (like calendars or contact lists), without having to interrupt a conversation and look at the phone's tiny screen. A user presses one of the phone's button and is given the requested data via an audio output that is heard only by the user (not the other person on the line). Here's a link to a video demonstration and additional information on blindSight .

"Mischief" is a technology intending to connect a classroom of students to a central monitor, so that teachers in another location can lead and interact with the class. It allows many users to engage the system simultaneously, supporting anonymous responses and communicating with what the researchers describe as "a focus of attention." (Sorry, no cool video with this one - just a long, rather boring research paper. )

"MySong" creates automatic accompaniment for the otherwise a cappella singer. Written with the University of Washington, with MySong, a user sings into a microphone and the program then selects chords to accompany the recorded voice. It even lets users manipulate chords so that someone with no musical background can be a composer. Here's a link to a video demonstration, audio samples and additional information about MySong.

Go to the Microsoft Subnet home page for more news, blogs, podcasts. More Microsoft Subnet blog posts: Microsoft told to pay Alcatel-Lucent $367 million Yahoo hostile takever looks to be a-comin'Likewise Software: sandwiched between Microsoft and open sourceTwo XP editions survive until 2010Early ISO vote tally: OOXML accepted Four fabulous giveaways from Microsoft Subnet and Cisco SubnetAll Microsoft Subnet blog posts

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