As this week we’re celebrating the Computer Science Education Week worldwide, Microsoft’s researchers shared their predictions about what to expect in 2017 and in the next decade within their respective fields. Here are some of the most promising insights.

Microsoft Predictions for 2017

  1. The language and speech processing applications will become more multilingual. Not only will they support a bigger number of languages, but also be able to process and produce information across different tongues within the same contexts and even sentences.
  2. Deep Learning will become more powerful than ever before. We can expect advances in its use in natural language processing, speech recognition, visual understanding and other computer-science related fields.
  3. Virtual Reality will be upgraded thanks to body tracking technology. As a result, user’s movement will be easily translated into their digital representations, possibly rendering the hand-held controllers redundant. The VR gameplay will enter a new level of precision.
  4. AI research will involve more and more games as training and testing ground for AI agents. This approach could also accelerate the collaborative AI research, as we’re gaining a better understanding of how AI bots learn from human demonstrators. If you’re into the topic, you can read more about game-based AI research in our post on OpenAI’s Universe platform.
  5. Internet of Things will play a vital role in agriculture. Powered up by machine learning and top-notch analytics, intelligent devices will help farmers monitor their crops to increase the yields.


What Will The Next Decade Bring?

  1. All children will learn how to code. Although the number of computer science-related jobs increases, there aren’t enough qualified people to fill them. As a necessity, the next decade will place emphasis on providing tools for learning coding and programming for the children.
  2. Quantum computing will revolutionize cryptography. It’s likely that by 2027 there’ll be quantum computers capable of breaking some of the traditionally encrypted systems. As a result, the cryptographers will need to design counter-solutions. This will give rise to post-quantum cryptosystems.
  3. Most of the people will work in a data-driven economy. In the decade to come, our income will rely more on the information we generate than on the things we actually do. Consequently, we might expect improved models of redistribution of wealth to compensate people for their contributions.
  4. AI will be all around us. Up to 30% of adults in the USA could work in AI-related services by the year 2027. What’s more, the line between human and AI interaction will become blurred from the consumer perspective. We might find ourselves interacting with bots without even realizing it.
  5. VR will involve other senses than vision and hearing.  It will become a multisensory experience. In the next decade, the perception affected by VR could lead to near-hallucinogenic sensations.

All of these predictions came from Microsoft’s 17 female researchers. Although some might seem a bit sci-fi, we’re sure to see a lot of them become reality pretty soon. All things considered, the future looks quite exciting. We’ll keep you posted.


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