Microsoft Build 2017: Satya Nadella Champions Developing Tech With An Inclusive Aim

Nadella wants developers to create “practical design choices that help enshrine these timeless values”

Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella has championed the need to ensure cutting-edge technology and its development is being done with the interests of people at its heart. 

At Microsoft’s Build 2017 developers’ conference, Nadella championed Redmond’s much touted message of empowering people with data and technology.

However, he has tweaked that mission statement to get behind the concept of finding  “practical ways to make progress”.

Empowerment for all 

women business tech it power electricity © Sergey Nivens ShutterstockWith the development of smarter, autonomous systems and artificial intelligence (AI), Nadella noted that technology should be created with the idea of helping everybody benefit from the advantages the latest technology can yield if developed along this missive. 

“I believe we can make these practical design choices that help enshrine these timeless values,” he enthused. “Let us use technology to bring more empowerment to more people.” 

Essentially, Nadella’s Microsoft is not going to stop with its development of AI, but will take tech like computer vision, speech and text understanding to help more people use technology and participate in the economic developments it brings. 

Nadella noted that “inclusive design can be an instrument for inclusive growth”. 

At the same time Nadella touted the need for developers and tech companies to build trust in the algorithms they create to “ensure there is more trust with technology each day”. 

While he was not explicit about it, Nadella is likely referring to ensuring software avoids too much snooping on people and that AIs are developed in a fashions that avoid inferring bias based on the data they are fed and the algorithms that govern machine learning

With Windows 10 having now reached 500 million machines, and the creation of slimmed down versions of the operating system in the form of Windows 10 S, Microsoft is clearly trying to get its relatively open OS out to as many people and computers as possible, giving credence to Nadella’s message. 

Put your knowledge of artificial intelligence to the test. Try our quiz!