by December 1, 2008 0 comments

Technologies by Microsoft Research Labs, India

This is a community collaborative environment in which automatic translation
of a pre-specified set of source documents to a target language is made
available, which can be corrected, changed, added to (as a wiki) by a user
community for common purposes. Such modified documents become a good usable
repository of knowledge in a target language, and at the same time provides
training data for making the automatic translation better. The technology has
been deployed by the MSDN community for correction of automatically translated
source MSDN articles (primarily, product literature, user-guides, experience
scenarios, Q/A, etc., which are primarily produced in English) from English to
Portuguese, for the Brazilian MSDN community. The deployment had been largely
successful with several thousands of users having contributed up to a few
million corrections over last six months, making the MSDN documents readily
available in Portuguese.

Correctly configuring access control is a difficult problem. For example, if
you have an application that an administrator runs routinely, and if some hacker
gains write access to its executable, then the hacker can replace it and gain
administrative privileges. How do we prevent such holes in access control? Netra
is a tool that systematically analyzes all access control metadata on a system
and looks for such kinds of configuration errors.

It uses logic programming to model the Operating System’s access control
logic, as well as policy specifications and uses logical inferences to
systematically find and eradicate such problems. Netra has now been adopted by
the Secure Windows Initiative (SWI) group inside Microsoft to help audit access
control for all of Microsoft’s products.

In every large project, when there are failures, a lot of effort is spent
diagnosing its root cause. Holmes records for each run the paths that were taken
in the code, and uses a statistical model of paths built from a large number of
successful and failing runs to predict statistically the likely causes of
failure. The project has been adopted by an internal Microsoft compiler team.

Schema driven adapters
Microsoft BizTalk Server comes with an adapter framework to help 3rd party
developers interface BizTalk with LoB (Line Of Business) apps like Seibel, SAP,
etc. MSR India did a research project where it proposed specifying most such
adapters declaratively at the level of schemas, thereby greatly reducing the
amount of code that an adapter developer has to write. This proposal was called
“Schema Driven Adapters”, and the ideas were adopted and shipped as part of the
Adapter development toolkit in BizTalk.

Technologies from IBM Research Labs, India

Sensei to improve spoken English
A web-based, interactive online spoken language assessment technology to help
people who speak English as a second language to improve their speaking skills.
It finds broad application in call centers, individuals, and even schools and
businesses, who’re increasingly going global.

Business Finder
A real-time, presence based mobile resources management technology that
helps consumers find and use the nearest, most highly rated and available
service vendors like plumbers, electricians, carpenters or doctors. This
technology combines sophisticated GIS applications and data analysis with mobile
telephone networks to provide timely information to consumers.

National Health Data Network Project
This project has resulted in a report, which was submitted to the
President of India in early 2005. The report envisioned an information-based
healthcare system for India, in which technology could actively assist in
improving the nation’s health. The project developed a secure, standards-based
prototype for sharing health data across the country, implementing some of the
recommendations made in the report.

The Spoken Web
A new technology called the Spoken Web to transform how people create
content and interact  with information  and transaction services — using the
spoken interactions over phones instead of using the PC and textual  interfaces.
The Spoken Web is based on the concept of a “VoiceSite” which is analogous to
websites but accessible over phone through a voice interface. This is
particularly compelling for people who don’t have access to a personal computer
and Internet, or are unable to read or write.

Hindi Speech Recognition Technology
This technology can understand and transcribe human speech with minimal use
of keyboard, thereby helping people unfamiliar with computers or the Hindi
keyboard. The technology has been licensed to Centre for Development of Advanced
Computing (CDAC) to develop a Hindi speaker independent, continuous speech
recognition system.

Modeling Natural Disasters
A mathematical model that enables government bodies, relief agencies and
solution providers to do strategic planning and enable effective allocation of
resources for natural responsive disaster management. The model uses a
stochastic linear optimization or integer programming approach to manage and
reduce the risk of natural disasters.

This technology is a system for generation, distribution, management and
redemption  of electronic  coupons. It was incorporated in IBM’s WebSphere
Commerce 5.4 & 5.5 products. The system has several unique features, such as a
coupon wallet and automatic recommendations on coupons that may be applicable to
a shopping cart.


ProductsIntel’s six-core Dunnington processor

D-Link Videophone GVC-3000
Yes, believe it or not, but the
highest end and most powerful processor from Intel’s stable till date has
been developed completely out of Intel India’s design team in Bangalore. The
Xeon 7400 series processor, formerly code named Dunnington (reviewed in
PCQuest Nov 2008 issue) has a six-core CPU with 16 MB L3 cache and 1.9
billion transistors. Everything from front-end design, to pre-silicon logic
validation and back-end design for the Dunnington were undertaken in India.
With its release Intel has moved its entire Xeon family of processors to the
45nm Hi-k manufacturing process. Intel India has been developing other
products as well includeing contributions in developing the Napa, Santa Rosa
and Montevina mobile platforms, as well as the Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5300 and
Core 2 Extreme quad-core processor families.
With the launch of IP
Videophone GVC-3000, D-Link marked another milestone for the Indian hardware
industry. The GVC-3000 is a fully featured videophone with an in-built LCD
screen. The stand-alone device does not require any computer or a high
dedicated bandwidth. The device is a fully featured, easy-to-use, SIP based
Video or Video over IP phone supporting H.264 Video Codec. With its advanced
Jitter Buffer Management and perfect Lip Synchronization, GVC-3000 brings
together toll quality voice and high quality video. It can send and receive
video at CIF or QCIF resolution, at up to 30 frames per second. It is
ideally suited for business as it provides a communication solution
supporting both voice and video conferencing. The product has been
completely designed at D-Link’s R&D center in Bangalore and manufactured in
India at the company’s Goa plant.

Products by Microsoft Development Center, India

Virtual PC 2007
This product needs no introduction. It’s the desktop virtualization software
from Microsoft. Developed by Microsoft India Development center, the product saw
over 450,000 downloads in just one first week of its release.

The Jscript language and tools in Visual Studio 2008 are another
contribution by MSIDC, as well as the Jscript Authoring services. These services
have introduced JScript “intelligence” support to any other programming
language. In the last couple of years, the lab has also shipped three versions
of Visual J# as part of Visual Studio .NET, Visual Studio 2003 and Visual Studio

Shielding paper documents against forgery

A project by HP Labs, India that aims to reduce sham occurring in forgery of
paper documents

Paper documents are widely used to support business transactions. These
include grade and degree certificates for obtaining employment, bank and
financial statements for applying for loans and identity and address proofs for
several requirements and many others.

Fraud and forgery is an issue that plagues paper documents. Document fraud is
a major concern for governments and enterprises around the world. For example, a
KPMG study (KPMG (2006) India Fraud Survey Report) which polled senior managers
across 1000 companies in India came up with the following findings:

* 39% of the respondents acknowledged that their enterprises had been subject
to fraud in the last year
* Forged documents was among the top 3 reasons for fraud encountered by these
* 13% of the respondents identified forged documents as the major reason for
fraud related losses in their business (in rupee terms)

Fraud prevention makes processes overly complex, increases the transaction
costs, and makes due diligence of transactions cumbersome and time consuming.
However incidents of forgery and fraud using paper documents has increased with
the availability of cheaper printing and copying technologies.

Determining the authenticity of the document is not just a technical
challenge, but also a logistic one. In some countries there are as many as
20,000 authorities issuing birth certificates alone. Other agencies issue
driver’s licenses, degree certificates, etc. Tens of thousands of verifiers
dealing with tens of thousands of issuing authorities is not a practical
solution. Creating a dedicated online infrastructure for these agencies would be
extremely expensive or in some cases even infeasible.

Existing authentication methods are complex, incur large transaction costs
and are time consuming. Hence, the need for a system that can provide speedy,
reliable and cost-effective verification of paper documents.

Our innovation addresses the problem of document fraud and forgery by
allowing enterprises to continue to use their existing methods of generating
paper documents with the addition of secure machine readable data that can be
printed along with the documents.

The Solution: Document Authentication System
The Document Authentication System (DAS) can be used to verify paper documents
requiring authentication. It can either be a stand alone system to verify
documents issued by an enterprise or be a centralized system that can verify
documents issued by a set of enterprises.

Machine readability of data from paper can be enabled through symbologies
such as 2D barcodes. 2D barcodes are capable of storing multilingual information
and images subject to size limitations. All such content can be recovered
reliably on scanning and decoding of the barcode.

The integrity of the document is validated using the content decoded from the
barcode. The DAS incorporates security features to ensure that the contents of
the barcode are not tampered with. The client side software prints out a
verification statement which contains the information decoded from the barcode
along with a statement from the server indicating that the barcode’s contents
are authentic. Comparison of this information with the content on the original
document can be used to detect forgery or manipulation very early in an
attempted fraud. The verification statement, containing full information, can be
processed by itself without even comparing it with the original human-readable
text. It is also often desirable that a centralized system should protect the
privacy of the end users whose documents are being verified. The DAS system
ensures privacy of the individual by neither storing nor seeing the contents of
the documents being verified.

DAS helps in bridging the paper world with the digital world. A majority of
businesses in the new economies like India and China still use paper based
systems and processes. Paper documents have issues of fraud associated with
them. Prevention and detection of fraud is time consuming and expensive slowing
down business transactions substantially. Correspondingly, this also has an
economic impact on the overall society. HP Labs India is currently in
discussions with business groups of HP to get them to adopt this solution to
sell to customers.

A pilot DAS is running with the International Institute of Information
Technology ( where they have issued the grade transcripts
for their students using our technology as a pilot.

Use case
A citizen could get an authenticated government document printed at an Internet
kiosk or even in the comfort of his house. The request for a document is
transmitted over a network from the kiosk to a centralized document issuing
authority. This request is processed and the digitally signed barcoded document
is returned to the kiosk over the network, where it is printed. Since the
document is essentially generated at a secure central location and also
authenticated by the digital signature it can be trusted.

This has widespread relevance for e-Governance initiatives worldwide since
currently the document issue is slowed down due to the need for physical

Government entities, public offices and companies issue a whole variety of
documents and certificates. For instance, the legal possession of agricultural
land or urban property is ensured by registering their acquisition at a
government office and obtaining registration documents. Such documents need to
be preserved and validated as they are valuable to the recipient, for purposes
such as raising loans from banks. By authenticating these documents with digital
signatures, we can ensure that they can be printed remotely and issued.

Products by Microsoft Development Center, India (Contd…)

Visual Studio for Devices
A component of Visual Studio 2008 that provides all the features and support
that developers need to develop rich applications for Windows Mobile and Windows
CE platforms.

Microsoft BizTalk RFID
The Microsoft RFID platform was developed by the Connected Systems Division
(CSD) Edge Team at MSIDC. The team is responsible for the overall development of
Microsoft BizTalk RFID 2006 R2.

Data Protection Manager 2007
This product is expected to be the new standard for Windows data protection.
It’s been designed to protect Microsoft apps and Windows Server, by using
seamlessly integrated disk and tape media. It was released to manufacturing in
September 2007.

nVidia GEFORCE 9400M

nVidia has been spreading its wings and moving beyond providing graphics
chips to provide motherboard chipsets. Their latest chipset, called the GEFORCE
9400M is an integrated platform for intel CPUs, which combines the Northbridge,
Southbridge, and GPU into a single chip. 100 engineers worked on designing the
chip, who took about 18 months to complete it. Apart from having been designed
completely out of India, the chip’s claim to fame is Apple’s decision to move
its complete notebooks range to it. In India, HCL was the first Indian OEM to
have used it.

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