I often get hit with “Microsoft only copies the stuff that other people have already invented”. Well – I think there are clear examples of our being second (or third or fourth or…) to market – but I also think we do some great original stuff out of our research centers and within the product groups. I think many of us will have seen Photosynth before – but check out this great video, the best I have seen on our work in this area:
Now tell me we don’t do amazing technology… Actually I find it is very dangerous to throw out such challenges on the Internet – but I will anyway 🙂
Oh – and Microsoft Surface isn’t too shoddy either 🙂
EDIT – in response to comments along the lines of “nah – you just bought it”. Well – I have no direct contacts in this team – but I’m pretty sure that we didn’t just rush out, buy and rebadge. From my skimming it looks very much like it started out as a collaborative piece of work from Microsoft Research and the University of Washington, subsequently mixed with a spot of Sea Dragon which I believe is the acquisition people associate with Photosynth. Check out http://research.microsoft.com/IVM/PhotoTours/ for some background.