Moneycontrol
Feb 20, 2017 07:27 PM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

Here's why Satya Nadella is excited about augmented reality

On a visit to India, Microsoft Chief Executive Officer, Satya Nadella is betting on the potential of augmented reality and said that it is the ultimate computer.


Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella is enthusiastic about the avenues technology can open for communciation. Windows assistant Cortana is, in fact, next level of communication and an OS in itself, he said.

"Give it really natural language understanding because for all the advances in human-computer interface, there is nothing to beat language. And so, that is the ultimate breakthrough," Nadella told former Infosys veteran Nandan Nilekani in Bengaluru on Monday.

Nadella also spoke about other forms such as augmented reality, artificial intelligence and digital transformation during a conference at Bengaluru.

Nadella said that Internet in India has scaled up significantly. He is betting on the potential of augmented reality and said that it is the ultimate computer. “Storage network is fuelling Artificial Intelligence revolution. We are excited about Microsoft Cortana’s AI offering, it has capability to do human-level speech recognition,” he added.

Below is the transcript of Satya Nadella's conversation with  Nandan Nilekani.

Q: Can you talk a bit about Cortana?

A: The cloud is something that even in India, it has really taken off for us. The second area is Cortana. For me, I actually think of it as a third run-time, as an agent. When I say the third, the operating system of the device, whether it is the PC or the phone, the operating system was the first run-time.

The second run-time you could say was the browser. The third run-time can actually be the agent, because in some sense, the agent knows you, knows your work context, knows the work and that is how we are building Cortana. And give it really natural language understanding because for all the advances in human-computer interface, there is nothing to beat language. And so, that is the ultimate breakthrough.

Q: You think language is the third big way in human interaction?

A: Absolutely, and that is the second platform that we are very excited about. The third one, it will take a little more time, but I am very excited about augmented reality. It is going to be all forms of virtual reality to augmented reality. But when you put on a HoloLens as a designer or as a technician or even as a student, I always think the first time I put on HoloLens was to see something that Cleveland Clinic had built for medical education. In fact, the first year anatomy class in Cleveland Clinic is being taught using HoloLens.

And I thought, as an electrical engineer who never understood maximum equations, I thought if I were to ever have it, I would have been a better electrical engineer. But overall, I feel that augmented reality is perhaps that ultimate computer.

Q: And this augmented reality, virtual reality, you think all that is coming together?

A: To me, it is just a dial of the opacity. Ultimately, you want to be able to have a setting that you can set, whether you want a full 360-degree immersive field of view or you want to be able to see the real world. That is at least how I think about the three platforms.

For full interview, watch video...

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