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Microsoft will release an original ebook science fiction short story anthology on November 17. The collection, titled Future Visions: Original Science Fiction Stories Inspired by Microsoft, will feature works by top sci-fi authors who gained inspiration for their stories from first-hand looks at Microsoft's research projects.

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The Kinect is at once a niche and – forgive the pun – game-changing technologies. Although it has not quite resonated yet with customers in actual gaming, the potential is there for some fantastic experiences in the coming years.

One issue with all systems that detect motion is accuracy. Version 2 of the Kinect is certainly more powerful than its predecessor, but the nuances of finger movement are still lacking. Enter 'Handpose' a project that Microsoft Research has been working on for some time.

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The Image Composite Editor (ICE) is Microsoft Research's advanced panoramic image stitcher for Windows, which has been overhauled to version 2.0. Importing a number of overlapping photographs from a single scene will enable the app to create a seamless high-resolution panorama. Think of this as a suite to create similar magic as the Windows Phone panoramic feature.

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Skype is one of the most popular forms of communication across mobile platforms and the desktop. Microsoft Research is working on real-time translation functionality to enable consumers to use Skype and engage in conversation with others from around the world. George Takei, better known as Mr Sulu in Star Trek, visited Microsoft Research to see how the technology works.

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