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Andrew Herbert: On Managing Scientists and Researching the Future at MSR Cambridge

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Microsoft Research Cambridge turned 10 years old last week. Happy birthday MSRC! I was lucky enough to have been there and was able to conduct several interviews with some of the many unusually intelligent and passionate folks who think about the future of computing and the role computation plays in every aspect of our lives (from new interactive devices that promise to make the business of home life more interesting and less stressful, tools and methodologies that will help Microsoft quickly respond to industry changes (can you say many core?) to understanding, via accurate modeling, incredibly complex biological and ecological systems).

In this interview, I sit down with Andrew Herbert, Distinguished Engineer and Managing Director of MSR Cambridge. Andrew, an OS guy at heart, manages over one hundred researchers, who, by definition, are unmanageable - that is, you can't tell a researcher what to do; you can only guide them in the right direction and ensure that they do not get too distracted from their science.

Tune in and learn about Andrew's past, the history of MSR Cambridge, important research areas in computation for the next 10 years, and what life is like at MSR for scientists.

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  • Jonathan MerriweatherCyonix Me
    Congrats MSRC Smiley

    Keep on posting Charles Wink
  • Joshua RossJoshRoss Niner since 2004
    What happened around 5:37? Did Dr. Herbert let spill the beans, in regards to virtualization, or was there an encoding glitch? I hope that there is something new, from Microsoft, in the virtualization arena. I also find the idea of MapReduce fascinating, more so when you have hundreds or thousands of nodes working on problem sets.
  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change
    JoshRoss wrote:
    What happened around 5:37? Did Dr. Herbert let spill the beans, in regards to virtualization, or was there an encoding glitch? I hope that there is something new, from Microsoft, in the virtualization arena. I also find the idea of MapReduce fascinating, more so when you have hundreds or thousands of nodes working on problem sets.


    Nothing to do with virtualization... It was a mention of something else (far less intriguing, in fact).

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