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Microsoft ups its AI game for Bing, Cortana and Office 365

MICROSOFT HAS announced a whole new bunch of features for Bing*, Cortana and Office 365 that up its AI credentials and make life a little bit easier.

For Bing results, it is attempting to bring a more balanced view of the world by offering multiple viewpoints of the same answer – for example a pro and an anti-answer, where there is opinion more than fact on the issue.

It will also have a way of coaxing more information out of you when you’re not sure the right questions to ask. For example, a search for “Who is the biggest tool on TV, the one in the mornings”, might yield, “Do you mean the one that used to work for CNN.

A tinderbox if ever there was one, you’ll now see Reddit posts, and answers from Ask Me Anything (AMAs) included in results after a deal was struck between the two.

All this magic tech is coming from machine-reading comprehension based on Project Brainwave, which will allow Microsoft services to cross-check its fact from multiple sources.

Cortana will now be able to chain commands together – not just book tickets, but add the information to your calendar (which now includes Google as well as Outlook).

Office 365 will be able to not only sort the wheat from the chaff in your inbox but actually create a summary of the bits you need to know.

Word will soon be able to work out contextually what particular acronyms mean, even if they’re peculiar ones to your company – or even perhaps staff initials.

Another one will find relevant bits from elsewhere in Office without having to leave the working document, so you’ll be able to find a relevant pie chart to post straight into your open Word doc.

Other updates include updates to the Cognitive Services engine for third parties, an AI-powered health bot project and a bunch of new features for Windows Photos.

The company also confirmed a $50m investment in the AI for Earth programme, aimed at helping the people who are helping protect the planet. µ

*Sorry? Yeah, that’s right, it’s a search engine. Yeah, like Google. But with fewer letters in its name. 

Source : Inquirer

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