Microsoft’s Head of Research: Machine learning important for Windows 9

Head of Microsoft Research, Peter Lee, has hinted on the future of Windows in an interview with the website The company is planning to use ‘machine learning’ to make Windows smarter.


Although Lee didn’t officially confirmed rumors about Windows 9, he told DigitalTrends that the next version of Windows (often referred to as Windows 9) will rely heavily on machine learning. Machine learning is a branch of artificial intelligence and  concerns the construction and study of systems that can learn from data.  The technology is currently used to e.g. identify spam from valid e-mails.

Microsoft wants to make machine learning usable and visible to the end user. “Using machine learning to extract relationships, entities, key ideas being worked on and bring those to the surface in tools. Maybe even digital-assistant tools to make companies more productive and smarter. That’s one area we’re going at for Windows 9”, Lee said.

Although Lee doesn’t explain how Microsoft will implement machine learning in Windows 9, the technology is not new to the company.

Currently the company uses the same kind of technology in its Bing search engine, and also in Cortana, it’s digital assistant for Windows Phone. According to Lee, Cortana is getting more human everyday in its answers as Microsoft improves the software continuously. Although the software is currently only available for Windows Phone, there are signs that Microsoft wants to add Cortana functionality to Windows for PCs as well.

Google and Apple also both have similar technology with Siri and Google Now, the latter now also works on PCs.