Microsoft 'azolla' - study emerging markets

Some of Microsoft’s top researchers spend their time thinking about complex software, algorithms and security systems. Others contemplate azolla — an aquatic fern fed to cattle in the hopes of increasing milk production.The azolla experts are part of a nine-person team at Microsoft Research India that approaches the technology of emerging markets in unconventional ways. […]

Some of Microsoft’s top researchers spend their time thinking about complex software, algorithms and security systems. Others contemplate azolla — an aquatic fern fed to cattle in the hopes of increasing milk production.

The azolla experts are part of a nine-person team at Microsoft Research India that approaches the technology of emerging markets in unconventional ways. These computer scientists say they have the freedom to forget about PCs and software altogether as they tackle problems. Most often, they rely on a mix of sociology and empirical testing to see whether quirky ideas can make technology useful to those who have heretofore lived without it.

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