Two of America’s tech powers — IBM and Microsoft — have given glimpses of what they consider the most exciting and promising research opportunities for the future. Their lists are fascinating in their own right but also in a comparative sense, for what they show about the two companies.
There will be more to say about specific items later on. For now, you can see IBM’s list of “Five Innovations That Will Change Our Lives in the Next Five Years” here, and a Network World report on 10 hot projects from Microsoft’s research center here. I think much about both companies is revealed by the comparison — not to mention the implications for all of us if these visions are fulfilled.*