On Tuesday, May 3rd 2016, the Québec Government Office in Boston organized a visit for the Science & Technology Diplomatic Circle to the Microsoft New England Research and Development Center, a research and development (R&D) branch of Microsoft situated in Cambridge, MA.
Since it is a place for entrepreneurs and start-ups to solve problems within Microsoft’s office, there are not too many employees in the office compared to the office right across the street which houses approximately 450 employees. The space’s main focus is to support start-ups through their life cycle from discovery to validation until the growth phase.
Hosting us from Microsoft were Craig Dillon (Director of Microsoft Technology Center) and Joshua Drew (Senior Technical Evangelist for Start-Ups).
The Quebec Government Office in Boston, along with 24 representatives from 17 different countries and states, received explanations from the technology center team members while visiting the site. Before the site visit, we participated in a meeting to learn about Microsoft’s various research areas.
The Microsoft Technology Center (MTC) is a business model of innovation that focuses on partnerships with start-ups. They have 35 innovation centers worldwide, 14 in the U.S., 1 in Toronto, 7 accelerators programs around the world and 2 classes every year. They invest directly 3.5 B USD every year in research. They also have a Venture Capital engagement arm to finance innovative projects through programs named Bispark and Bispark +. They put in place programs such as Yttack to interact with universities, and Citynex to partner with local governments.
MTC is focused on mobile first then cloud computing. They recently built a data center in North Virginia as big as three Boeing 777s. Microsoft is building 500,000 cores in data centers every year. They are on a mission to democratize machine learning.
We wish Microsoft Technology Center, many more years of discovering new IT solutions for our everyday problems.
“Our industry doesn’t respect tradition. It only respects innovation” - Satya Nadella (Microsoft’s CEO)