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Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2006
Microsoft Conference Center, Redmond, Washington

Agenda for Tuesday, July 18, 2006

technology theme key






Continental Breakfast



Microsoft Research: An Overview of Projects
Daniel T. Ling, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Research
Steve Richardson, Microsoft Research
Matt Uyttendaele, Microsoft Research
Yi-Min Wang, Microsoft Research
Alec Wolman, Microsoft Research

Webcast: Microsoft Research: An Overview of Projects



DemoFest provides an opportunity for leading academic researcher to see a sampling of exciting results from Microsoft Research. This unique three-hour event also gives faculty a chance to talk one on one with the Microsoft researchers and to see a few of the sponsored research projects from the External Research & Programs group.



Box Lunch Pickup



Lunch and Brown Bag Sessions



University and Industry Collaborations
Bryan Barnett, Microsoft Research (Chair); Ken Leppert, Microsoft Research

Microsoft engages with the academic research community in a number of ways. This session will focus on the legal and other issues raised by these partnerships and suggest guidelines for ensuring that they are successful. There will be an open discussion about university-industry engagements in general, and the presenters will answer questions about engaging with Microsoft in particular.

Presentation: University-Industry Collaborations (Bryan Barnett, Ken Leppert)

Webcast: University and Industry Collaborations


St. Helens

Gaming for Computer Science Instruction
John Nordlinger, Microsoft Research (Chair); Andrew Phelps, Rochester Institute of Technology

John Nordlinger will be discussing the gaming in computer science initiative and assets available and forthcoming for academics interested in enhancing computer science. Andrew Phelps will then present one of those assets created by RIT called MUPPETs (Multi-User Programming Pedagogy for Enhancing Traditional Study), which supports C#, Java, DirectX, and OpenGL in a pervasive visual virtual environment.

Presentation: Gaming for Computer Science Instruction (Andrew Phelps)

White paper: Computer Gaming to Enhance CS Curriculum

Webcast: Gaming for Computer Science Instruction



High-Performance Computing with Windows
Dan Fay, Microsoft (Chair); Marvin Theimer, Microsoft; Ryan Waite, Microsoft

Microsoft recently launched its first product aimed specifically at the high-performance computing market, namely the Windows Server 2003 Compute Cluster Solution. This product is designed to enable running compute-intensive scientific and technical programs on Windows-based compute clusters, with an emphasis on supporting personal and small workgroup compute clusters. I will give a tour of the product�s capabilities and will also discuss what kinds of things we are thinking of adding to the next version of the product.

High-Performance Computing with Windows (Ryan Waite)

Webcast: High-Performance Computing with Windows



Break-out Sessions



Understanding Emerging Markets and Opportunities
Phillip Joe, Microsoft; Daniel Makoski, Microsoft; Melissa Pailthorp, Microsoft; John SanGiovanni, Microsoft Research (Chair); Hugh Teegan, Microsoft

In recent years, emerging markets have become a major focus of technology engagement in research, commerce, and community outreach. This session will feature program managers from three separate teams around Microsoft who have active projects focused on emerging markets and will provide some insights on the social and technical opportunities and considerations.

Inclusive Design � Principles for Innovating in Emerging Markets (Phillip Joe)
Microsoft�s Community Investment � Citizenship and Community Affairs (Melissa Pailthorp)
FonePlus (Hugh Teegan)

Webcast: Understanding Emerging Markets and Opportunities



Microsoft eScience
Simon Mercer, Microsoft Research (Chair); Alex Szalay, The Johns Hopkins University; Katalin Szl�vecz, The Johns Hopkins University

eScience can be defined as the use of computing to enable scientific understanding on a scale that would not otherwise be possible. These projects demonstrate the breadth of impact computing is having on scientific research.

Science in an Exponential World (Alexander Szalay)
Building an End-to-End System for Long-Term Soil Monitoring (Katalin Szl�vecz)

Webcast: Microsoft eScience

St. Helens

Recent Progress on Sensor Networks and Embedded Computing
Stewart Tansley, Microsoft Research (Chair); Feng Zhao, Microsoft Research

We have been investigating the problems of programming and managing networked embedded systems such as wireless sensors and mobile devices at Microsoft Research. In this talk, I will report on our progresses on a number of projects, including the SONGS programming model based on the specification and composition of light-weight services; the MSRSense Toolkit, which is a set of tools for collecting, processing, visualizing, and archiving sensor data and bridging the motes and .NET/PC platforms; and SenseWeb, which provides an infrastructure and a geo-centric Web interface for publishing and browsing live sensor data streams, as well as our work on a low-power reconfigurable hardware platform to support multi-radio real-time applications. For more information about the Networked Embedded Computing group, visit the Networked Embedded Computing Web site.

Recent Progress on Sensor Networks and Embedded Computing (Feng Zhao)

Webcast: Recent Progress on Sensor Networks and Embedded Computing



Computing Research in Latin America
Marcelo Arenas, Universidad Catolica de Chile; David Garza-Salazar, Tecnol�gico de Monterrey, Mexico; Jaime Puente, Microsoft Research (Chair); Clarisse Sieckenius de Souza, Pontif�cia Universidade Cat�lica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

This session will provide an overview of the research agenda in computer science in Latin America and the overall regional organization and existing cooperation programs. Several interesting projects will be discussed as examples of the success research stories in this emerging region. The number of science and engineering articles credited to Latin American organizational authors and published in the most recognized influential scientific and technical journals almost tripled between 1988 and 2001. This growth rate was greater than that of emerging and developing countries in other regions. The increase in the number of Latin American articles was concentrated in four countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico. During this session specific research projects from Brazil, Mexico, and Chile will be mentioned in addition to an overall perspective of the computer science research agenda in the region.

Computing Research in Latin America (Jaime Puente)
Databases: Some Research Opportunities for Latin America (Marcelo Arenas)
Computer Science Research in Mexico (David Garza-Salazar)
HCI In Brazil: The Research and the People (Clarisse Sieckenius de Souza)

Webcast: Computing Research in Latin America


Information Makers and Consuming Information
Max Chickering, Microsoft Live Labs; Elizabeth Lane Lawley, Rochester Institute Technology; Evelyne Viegas, Microsoft Research (Chair)

Lawley�s talk on �The Social Side of Search� emphasizes a new internet culture. Most characterizations of search activities frame it as a solitary activity � like reading or writing. A single user types queries into the search box on their personal computer. In fact, however, search is inherently informed by the actions of other users. The ranking of search results is based not only on the content of the page, but also on the extent to which that page has been linked to by other users. And a growing number of search-related application explicitly prioritize collaborative information seeking behavior � examples include social bookmarking services like, and social photo sharing applications like Flickr. I will discuss the growing importance of social features in search-related applications, as well as the tension between sharing and privacy that can result from these features.

Chickering�s talk on �Learning Bayesian Networks for Managing Inventory of Banner Advertisements� addresses the challenges of bringing back to the user relevant ads. Many online publishers sell space on their Web pages for placement of banner advertisements. In addition, these publishers often give impression �guarantees� � the publisher agrees to show each advertisement a minimum number of times. Impression guarantees significantly complicate the advertisement-delivery system because the system must manage inventory. This talk describes how to manage inventory of banner advertisements. The system allows advertisers to target both groups of pages (e.g., sports pages) and demographic information about the people browsing the content (e.g., males from Seattle). The system uses Web-traffic data to maintain a Bayesian-network model of the joint distribution over targetable attributes.

The Social Side of Search (Elizabeth Lane Lawley)
Learning Bayesian Networks for Managing Inventory of Display Advertisements (Max Chickering)

Webcast: Information Makers and Consuming Information


Hands-on: Exploring a Multi-Cultural Classroom and Supporting Large Tiled Displays
Patrick Bristow, Microsoft Research (Chair); Brian Donnellan, National University of Ireland at Galway; Patrick Mantey, University of California at Santa Cruz; Gino Sorcinelli, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Professors Donnellan and Sorcinelli will model how they use ConferenceXP and Tablet PCs in their trans-Atlantic, virtual classroom. Session participants will take an active role in this process by using Tablet PCs to receive a broadcast of the session�s content in OneNote. The combination of Tablet PCs with OneNote enables participants to annotate PowerPoint slides with their comments by using the Tablet PC inking capability.

Professor Mantey will then present his work on an advanced multimedia lecture hall exploiting large tiled displays and student laptops, the software supporting their combined use, and the initial validation of this environment in enhancing learning and student-instructor interaction.

Presentation: Multi-Cultural Collaboration and Virtual Product Development Teams (Brian Donnellan, Gino Sorcinelli)

Webcast: Hands-on: Exploring a Multi-Cultural Classroom and Supporting Large Tiled Displays



Design Expo
The Design Expo is a Microsoft Research forum where the top graduate design institutions showcase their prototype interaction design ideas. Microsoft Research sponsors a semester long class at seven interdisciplinary leading design schools and invites the top class projects to present their ideas as part of the Faculty Summit. This year, we are inviting seven institutions with established programs in interdisciplinary design and will be providing a forum around the theme, �The Gigabit Connection: Opportunities and Issues in a High-Bandwidth Ubiquitous Computing World� to showcase exceptional design thinking about the future of computing and interaction. Student teams will present innovative business ideas, concept prototypes, visual and industrial designs, and supporting research in their media based presentations around the theme of high-bandwidth ubiquitous computing. This year�s schools include participants from New York University Interactive Telecommunications Program, Rhode Island School of Design, Stanford University, Carnegie Mellon University, Escola Superior de Desenho Industrial (Brazil), Technische Universiteit Delft (Netherlands), and National Institute of Design (India).

Webcast: Design Expo






Break-out Sessions



Digital Inclusion Research: A Global Survey
Tom Healy, Microsoft Research (Chair); Miguel Nussbaum, Universidad Catolica de Chile; Henry Nyongesa, University of Botswana; Roni Rosenfeld, Carnegie Mellon University; John SanGiovanni, Microsoft Research

In early 2006, Microsoft Research organized the Digital Inclusion RFP program. The focus of this program was to explore applications for mobile devices, wireless networking, and other emerging technologies for applications in rural or underserved communities. Eighteen projects were selected from ten different countries across a wide array of solutions and research problems. This session will feature presentations from three of the funded research teams, from the U.S., Chile, and Botswana. After the session, join us to engage in an open audience-driven discussion about these projects.

Digital Inclusion Research: A Global Survey (Tom Healy)
Bridging The Cognitive Divide And Transforming The Classroom Experience (Miguel Nussbaum)
Integrated Healthcare Information Services Through Mobiles (IHISM) (Henry Nyongesa)
Project HealthLine: Speech Interfaces for Healthcare Information Access in Underserved Communities (Roni Rosenfeld)

Webcast: Digital Inclusion Research: A Global Survey



Modeling in the Life Sciences
Tanya Berger-Wolf, University of Illinois at Chicago; Simon Mercer, Microsoft Research (Chair); Andrew Phillips, Microsoft Research; Sean Sedwards, University of Trento

The integration of computing with scientific research is catalyzing the creation of new forms of science. The analysis and modeling of complex biological systems has been identified by the 2020 Science Group as a key challenge in the understanding of biology, and the codification of biological concepts is a critical step in the development of formal languages to enable direct computation with biological concepts.

Analysis of Dynamic Social Networks (Tanya Berger-Wolf)
Simulating Biological Systems in the Stochastic p-Calculus (Andrew Phillips)
Modelling and Observing Biology (Sean Sedwards)

Webcast: Modeling in the Life Sciences


St. Helens

Creating Games with the XNA Framework
John Nordlinger, Microsoft Research (Chair); Mitch Walker, Microsoft

Come learn about how the XNA Framework will help you make great games. You�ll get an overview of the XNA Framework, where it fits in the XNA vision, and a detailed look into the various pieces of the framework. We�ll have plenty of demos and get our hands dirty writing code!


Windows CardSpace (Formerly InfoCard)
John Spencer, Microsoft Research (Chair); Steven R. Woodward, Microsoft

Windows CardSpace (formerly InfoCard) is the name for an end-user experience Microsoft is creating in support of the Identity Metasystem. The Identity Metasystem is an industry-wide initiative to solve federated user authentication for both Web site and Web server authentication.

Webcast: Windows CardSpace (Formerly InfoCard)


Going Wild and Live
Ken Church, Microsoft Research; Evelyne Viegas, Microsoft Research (Chair); Hugh Williams, Microsoft

Williams� talk focuses on �Windows Live Image Search.� Over the last nine months, the Windows Live Search team has been developing an image search engine for the platform released as a beta on March 9, 2006. The most visible changes are in the user experience: we enable users to see more images more easily, control thumbnail sizing, change the image and metadata display, continue to view images in the click through experience, and view the full-sized image in the context of the source Web page. The interface changes were motivated almost completely by the analysis of user data. In this talk, we explain our research into how users interact with image search engines, some of our findings, and the motivations behind our dramatically different user interface model. We also overview our architecture and discuss the work that is yet to be done, including improvements to relevance, adult filtering, result filtering, and increasing collection size.

Next, Ken Church will give a talk on �Wild Thing Goes Mobile and Local.� Typing is a pain, especially on a phone. Suppose you want to search for �Condoleezza Rice,� but you don�t know how to spell her name. And even if you did, you wouldn�t want to type that much, especially on a phone. With the Wild Thing, the user types �c rice� or �2#7423� on the phone. This pattern is short hand for the regular expression: /c.* rice.*/ or /[abc] .*[pqrs][ghi][[acb][def].*/ on the phone. The system uses a language model, based on MSN query logs, to find the k-best (that is, most popular) expansions of the regular expression. To find hot stuff, or your favorites, you shouldn�t have to type a lot, especially if we know your location. The Wild Thing raises some interesting � and fun � technical challenges for language modeling research. What is the probability of all queries in all locations? MSN has lots of data, but they haven�t seen every query in every location. How do we smooth language models over geography?

Windows Live Image Search (Hugh Williams)
The Wild Thing Goes Mobile and Local (Kenneth Church)

Webcast: Going Wild and Live


Hands-on: Engaging Students with Ubiquitous Presenter and WriteOn
Patrick Bristow, Microsoft Research (Chair); Beth Simon, University of California at San Diego; Joe Tront, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

In this talk, Beth Simon will explore uses of a Tablet PC�based system, called Ubiquitous Presenter, to support active learning � even when students don�t have Tablet PCs. She�ll also review interesting pedagogical uses by instructors and report on student use of the system to engage in the classroom and to review after class.

Next, Joe Tront will uncover WriteOn, a tool that is used to annotate dynamic demonstrations of screen presentations in classroom and distance learning environments. With WriteOn, the user can place a virtual transparency on the screen and annotate screen activity as it occurs on the lower layer. Screen images or movies can be saved for later review. Future broadcast capabilities will allow students to receive the presenter�s screen and personalize the notes on their tablets.

Presentation: Using WriteOn to Engage Students (Joseph G. Tront)

Webcast: Hands-on: Engaging Students with Ubiquitous Presenter and WriteOn






Using Computer Science to Develop Very Large Operating Systems
Jim Allchin, Co-President, Platforms & Services Division, Microsoft

The increasing complexity of developing and testing Windows, combined with the rise in security attacks, have underscored the need for more effective ways to find and prevent code deficiencies. Microsoft has used computer science itself to re-engineer its software development process by incorporating automated tools for project planning, visualizing dependencies in the source code, enforcing �Quality Gates� to prevent the creation of code deficiencies, and verification testing. This has resulted in a dramatic improvement in the efficiency of the engineering process and has raised the quality level of the code checked into the Windows Operating System code base.



Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2006: Final Thoughts and Next Steps
Sailesh Chutani, Microsoft Research; Tom Healy, Microsoft Research; Harold Javid, Microsoft Research (Chair); Kevin Schofield, Microsoft Research

Presentation: Final Thoughts and Next Steps (Tom Healy)

Webcast: Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2006: Final Thoughts and Next Steps



Dinner, Microsoft Visitor Center and Company Store

See the DemoFest booth descriptions


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