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Innovating for India

Special Correspondent


Microsoft showcases relevant’ technology


Bangalore: Too many kids in the class and too few personal computers to go around? Not to worry, technology is at hand that can help two students, each handling a mouse and a keyboard, to share one monitor: the screen is neatly split into two.

You have a huge file to download and no PC at hand? Mobile phones can do the job. A software tool called Combine allows the download to be shared by multiple mobile phones and then combined to recover the original.

These are just two of the innovative ideas to flow from the Bangalore-based centre of Microsoft Research, in recent months.

P. Anandan, Managing Director of the Indian research operations of the company, says such “cooperative computing” tools are central to the Bangalore centre’s mandate since it was set up in 2005.

The larger India Development Centre (IDC) in Hyderabad boasts a team of over 1300 engineers, many of whom made key contributions to the roll out of the Vista operating system.

Products

IDC’s Managing Director Srini Koppolu announced on Monday that among the products whose release was imminent, were a new Data Protection Manager which used disks rather than tape to help recover the most recent and most frequently required data in a corporate information storage system.

Another key solution to flow from India to a world user community is a tool to integrate all elements of a supply chain — manufacturer, distributor, customer — using a basic “tagging” tool like Radio Frequency Identification (RFID).

Solutions

Microsoft also announced a slew of solutions to kick start Indian innovation: the world’s first Innovation Triangle Park at Pune, in partnership with the local players, College of Engineering and Symbiosis International University to help develop software skills and industry linkages, a start-up accelerator programme to help new software start-ups and an Innovation Accelerator for students — specifically the top five Indian finalists in Microsoft’s annual designcompetition for the young, the Imagine Cup — where they will be helped to incubate their winning ideas.

The two-day annual Microsoft Innovation Summit opened here on Monday, providing a showcase for compelling applications in the IT arena — both from Microsoft as well as outside agencies.

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