Microsoft research tackles teen social networking

Microsoft Corp. is throwing computer scientists and physicists together with economists and psychologists in its new East Coast research facility.On Monday, the software giant opened the doors to Microsoft Research New England in Cambridge, Mass., hoping to take advantage of brain trusts like nearby MIT, Boston University and Harvard. This is Microsoft’s sixth research lab and the first on the east coast of the United States.”All the stars aligned on this,” Jennifer Chayes, managing director of the lab, told Computerworld. “I think it is really the time to bring together the harder sciences — the algorithmic and mathematical science part of computer science and physics — together with the social sciences, like economics and psychology. There are so many potential applications with those areas. The algorithm people have been going off on their own, and the social sciences people have had a lot of insights, but it hasn’t been so integrated.”

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