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Shen Xiangyang leaves Microsoft Shen Xiangyang will leave after 23 years at Microsoft

[Microsoft Shen Xiangyang leaves office] it was reported on November 14, Beijing time that just when Microsoft's artificial intelligence (AI) business was just starting, the software giant lost a key executive. The executive helped Microsoft turn AI research into real products.

Shen Xiangyang is in charge of Microsoft's artificial intelligence and research division. After 23 years in office, he will leave in February next year. He has transferred his department and responsibilities to Kevin & middot, chief technology officer (CTO) of Microsoft; Kevin Scott is responsible for the company's AI strategy, research and development of infrastructure, services and applications, and AI focused product business groups including search engine Bing.

Microsoft invests heavily in AI

His departure coincides with Microsoft's strong investment in AI. Microsoft CEO Satya & middot; Satya NADELLA recently said that AI and other technologies will play an important role in the company's future, which is crucial for the company to formulate strategies to win more customers for its important cloud business. NADELLA said that Microsoft's artificial intelligence technology has just entered the 'first round'.

Microsoft relies on the Microsoft Research Institute with stronger academic thinking to engage in cutting-edge research, and then transforms these research into real products that Microsoft can sell. In this process, Shen Xiangyang played a key role, and his artificial intelligence and Research Division was obviously established for this purpose. Now, Microsoft will have to work without Shen Xiangyang Achieve this goal.

Shen Xiangyang did not announce his next move, but a Microsoft spokesman said he would continue to serve as an adviser to NADELLA and Bill Gates, the company's founder.

"Shen Xiangyang has had a far-reaching impact on Microsoft. His contributions in the field of computer science and AI have left a legacy and laid a solid foundation for future innovation," NADELLA said.

AI has always been the focus of Microsoft in the past few years. NADELLA even changed the company's vision description and added AI in 2017. 'we believe that a new technology paradigm is emerging and reflected through intelligent cloud and intelligent edge. Computing here is more decentralized, AI drives insight to take action on behalf of users, and the user experience spans the world carrying users' available data and information Equipment. "

Microsoft's strategy is to find a way to simplify AI so that any company can use it, and recently released new features for azure AI towards this goal. Experts say that companies that really understand how to sell practical AI applications can take the lead in the fierce competition for cloud computing customers.

At the same time, Microsoft is the second largest cloud service provider after Amazon AWS, and has made some significant progress, including beating Amazon to win a $10 billion cloud computing contract from the US Department of defense recently.

Azure is still crucial to Microsoft's business and its future growth. In the latest fiscal quarter, Microsoft's overall commercial cloud business revenue reached US $11.6 billion, a year-on-year increase of 36%, including azure, office 365 and other cloud services.

Shen Xiangyang's' Heritage '

In 1996, Shen Xiangyang joined Microsoft Research Institute as a researcher at Microsoft Redmond headquarters. In 1998, he went to Beijing to help establish the current Microsoft Research Institute in Asia and rose all the way to President and Microsoft 'outstanding engineer. From 2007 to 2013, he was responsible for the product development of Bing search engine.

In September 2016, Microsoft merged several teams including Bing, virtual assistant Cortana and robot business to establish the artificial intelligence and research division. Microsoft's original intention is to pay more attention to transforming AI research into AI products, and Shen Xiangyang is responsible for this effort.

Last year, under the guidance of Shen Xiangyang, Microsoft doubled its bets on AI and established new business groups focusing on AI products, such as AI cognitive services and platforms, AI cognitive and hybrid reality business groups focusing on Microsoft azure cloud business. AI cognitive and hybrid reality business groups can integrate azure with cutting-edge computer vision technology, hololens 2 and other augmented reality technologies.

One of the achievements is the azure AI platform, which helps developers apply Microsoft's AI technology to their independent cloud computing applications. Microsoft said that this platform now has 20000 customers, and more than 85% of the fortune 100 companies have used the azure AI platform in the past 12 months.

Chinese executives in Silicon Valley have lost power

Before Shen Xiangyang, the last star executive who won the title of "the highest ranking Chinese executive in American technology giants" was former Baidu coo Lu Qi. Similarly, in 1996, Lu Qi, 35, also graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a PhD in computer science and came to Silicon Valley to join IBM Almaden laboratory.

In 1998, Lu Qi decided to leave IBM to join Yahoo and invest in the current hot research and development of search technology. Since then, he has been promoted to senior vice president and executive vice president.

At the end of 2008, Lu Qi left IBM and became the president of Microsoft's Internet business department. He became one of the four business heads of the technology giant with a market value of $250 billion. At the same time, he also brought the halo of "the highest position of Chinese in Microsoft".

During his stay at Microsoft, Lu Qi led a number of businesses including Microsoft office, office365, SharePoint, Skype and Bing, and was promoted to the global executive vice president of Microsoft group in 2013, which gave him an aura of "the most powerful Chinese in the Silicon Valley technology circle" in addition to the "Chinese in the top position at Microsoft".

In September 2016, after Lu Qi announced his resignation, the halo of "the most powerful Chinese in Silicon Valley's technology circle" fell on Shen Xiangyang, executive vice president of Microsoft.

Three years later, when Shen Xiangyang announced his resignation, the remaining executive positions of American technology giants are mainly Indian, and Chinese executives have lost power in an all-round way.

New AI leader

Scott has been the CTO of Microsoft since he switched from LinkedIn to Microsoft in 2017. He is the senior vice president of engineering and operations at LinkedIn.

As CTO, Scott mainly acts as a futurist to help the company insight into industry trends and discover new opportunities. R & D was not within his scope of responsibility before, but he contacted Microsoft's AI business by recruiting engineering team leaders and holding events such as AI forum AI 365.

Last year, in an interview, Scott shared his prediction of major technology trends in the future, including the high-cost processors in the next five to eight years, which will enable each device to be equipped with microprocessors capable of running advanced AI technology.

Scott said that AI may be the second most important thing Microsoft is doing after flagship businesses such as windows, office and azure. (author / Xiao Yu)