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COMP and Microsoft Welcome the Opening of the Smart Computing Laboratory to Nurture Talents and Encourage Smart City Innovations

The Department of Computing (COMP) and Microsoft  announced they had joined forces to establish the PolyU-Microsoft Smart Computing Laboratory in December 2014. Today, the two organizations were pleased to officiate the opening of this joint lab, aiming to support applied research, teaching and learning activities relating to smart computing, and to facilitate work-integrated applications development as well as training on the latest smart computing trends. The opening ceremony was officiated by Ir Daniel Lai, Interim Vice President (Administration), PolyU; Mr Stefan Sjoestroem, Vice President of Public Sector Group, Microsoft Asia; Mr Horace Chow, General Manager, Microsoft Hong Kong and Prof. Jiannong Cao, Chair Professor and Head of Department of Computing.

This joint lab is a major smart computing initiative of COMP, as it provides a unique platform to enhance teaching and learning, while inspiring innovative research and fostering university-industry collaborations on areas such as big data computing, human-centered computing, computational intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT). COMP also welcomes collaborations with other departments, institutions and companies to further realize smart computing technologies and applications.  "Through this partnership with Microsoft, we will make great progress in research on big data and human-centered computing, which are important components of smart computing," said Professor Cao.

As previously announced, the partnership between COMP and Microsoft extends beyond the Smart Computing Laboratory facility, which includes adequate software, hardware and mobile devices sponsorship. In addition, the two organizations will also work closely to provide opportunities in smart computing research, work-integrated workshops and training, professional consultancy, as well as global competition and awards for the students.

Today, at the opening ceremony, several talented COMP students also conducted demonstrations on smart computing and smart cities to the guests and audiences, including a project on big data analysis on road traffic through international collaboration, powered by Azure and Machine Learning, as well as a game and an application realized by Kinect.

The PolyU-Microsoft Smart Computing Laboratory is expected to inspire students and researchers to embrace cloud and smart computing on all fronts, enabling an integrated cloud-based platform for teaching, learning and research. As a result, students can be further nurtured and supported to realize their innovative ideas on building smart computing and next-generation city applications used by citizens to live better and smarter lives.