Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

Summary: Just a year after setting up FUSE Labs as a dedicated social-computing lab, Microsoft is moving the team into its Microsoft Research division.

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TOPICS: Microsoft, CXO
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Just a year after setting up FUSE Labs as a dedicated social-computing lab, Microsoft is moving the team into its Microsoft Research division.

Future Social Experiences (FUSE) Labs was established by Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie -- who announced this past fall that he is leaving Microsoft. FUSE Labs, headed by General Manager Lili Cheng, was an amalgamation of Cheng’s Microsoft Research (MSR) Creative Systems group and two other labs that were already under Ozzie: Rich Media Labs, in Redmond, Wash., and Starup Labs, based in Cambridge, Mass.

Cheng tweeted about FUSE being moved to Microsoft Research on November 16.

FUSE has launched several social-computing focused projects in the past year, including a Twitter-viewing tool, Emporia; a social-network organization tool, Spindex; Bing Twitter; and a mashup of Office Web Apps and Facebook, Microsoft Docs.

FUSE also was working on a competitor to Adobe's LightRoom product with a social-networking twist (codenamed "SmartFlow"), but so far has not delivered any test builds or releases to the public.

FUSE is introducing this week another new project, Montage, which is a tool that blends blogging and search.

I've asked Microsoft for more information about the decision to move FUSE to Microsoft Research. If and when I hear back, I'll update this post with more details.

Update: A spokesperson said there were "no changes to discuss."He added:

"We’re moving ahead full-steam with our work and are excited to continue our charter of creating new social, real-time, and media-rich experiences like Montage that allow people to create, connect and collaborate with what matters to them."

Topics: Microsoft, CXO

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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8 comments
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  • The never ending moving of the deck chairs........

    On a somewhat more serious, but highly related note, read the recent Ballmer interview with Ars http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2010/11/ars-talks-to-steve-ballmer.ars

    In some ways it is quite revealing of how Ballmer continues to fail in the much needed role of a visionary leader for MS. Hence the constant moving of the deck chairs?
    Economister
    • RE: Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

      @Economister
      Microsoft scores the largest amount of income in company history in the first quarter this year and you think Balmer is not a "visionary leader". Windows 7 sales are breaking records with no end in sight and you think he is not a visionary leader. Microsoft has the largest, most flexible and robust cloud computing infrasructure in the world and you think he is not a visionary leader. It looks to me like he is leader enough to bring home the bacon and focus on what is most important for the company's future and that is what matters the most.
      hunterpaw
      • Visionary

        @hunterpaw

        Most of your examples, given the mobile computing revolution just getting under way, and MS's obvious struggles in this area, only highlights your apparent failure to understand the term "visionary" in the current context.

        Living off a "technology and monopoly trust" established by his predecessor does not constitute a vision, I am afraid.
        Economister
      • RE: Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

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        gorians
  • RE: Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

    @Economister
    First, mobile computing is huge but it isn't all there is to "the current context." You just ignored what I wrote about Microsoft's Cloud Computing business. In the "current context" of Cloud computing Microsoft is far ahead of any other company.
    It is true that Microsoft has not done well in the mobile computing business in the past. But I would not count Microsoft out of it just yet. Microsoft learned from their mistakes and has overcome the Vista disaster in impressive fashion with Windows 7. Microsoft is also very good at coming late to the party and then dominating it. With Windows Phone 7 Microsoft has an vast number of developers that already know how to use the Windows Phone 7 programming tools and languages. Microsoft has the business savy and connections to prosper well in the mobile market. Also, Microsoft is more focused on the business side of mobile useage.
    hunterpaw
    • No, I did not

      @hunterpaw

      I specifically said "most", very mindful of your cloud example. The jury on the cloud has not even been selected yet, so we will wait and see on that one. As far as MS's history of "coming late to the party and then dominating it", they would never have been able to do most of that without their Windows monopoly and at times questionable an illegal conduct.

      To get back to the main topic of my initial post however, which was about the Ars Ballmer interview being revealing, you have so far not responded to that AT ALL. All I have read so far is a pretty standard MS defense.
      Economister
      • RE: Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

        @Economister
        If you want to discuss the anti-Balmer biased Ars interview you should post your opinion there. It has nothing to do with Mary-Jo Foley's Article.
        hunterpaw
  • RE: Microsoft moves its social-computing lab to Microsoft Research

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