Additional Efforts

By Matt Hines  |  Posted 2006-04-21 Print this article Print

Another effort, labeled as project Simone, is mean to address new ways for interacting with devices using speech. Such applications will prove useful in programming the devices of the future in addition to providing opportunities for a large number of new location-based, search and vertical handset applications, researchers said.

"There hasnt been a lot of work completed in the area of bringing natural language search together with GPS, but its not hard to imagine the benefits of a system that answers questions such as where am I?," said Boris Katz, a principal research scientist at CSAIL. "We want natural language recognition to be a first class citizen on the device."

Nokia and MIT didnt discuss how much money it plans to invest in the Cambridge research center, and Iannucci said that Nokia is viewing the effort as a resource for launching other new projects with additional partners.
While not officially involved in the effort yet, he pointed to existing collaboration between CSAIL and chip maker Texas Instruments that he said could complement some of the research being driven by Nokia.

The partners said they plan to make much of the work they are doing together public via research papers and other resources, but have made no promise of sharing their work with any specific standards bodies. MIT officials pointed out, however, that Berners-Lee remains director of the powerful World Wide Web Consortium and said some research could be shared with other researchers via that connection.

Industry analysts attending the event said that the new cooperation between MIT and Nokia should help give the handset maker a leg up in developing new technologies, but customers will drive what types of applications handset manufacturers pursue first, said David Linsalata, analyst with Framingham, Mass.-based IDC. He also said he believes that MITs experts will help push much of their work into the public domain.

"A lot of what is eventually taken up out of these sorts of efforts is whats needed and driven by customers more than anything else," Linsalata said. "MIT has said their goal is to publish a lot of this work and get it out into the open, so I think that will happen."

"The difference is that Nokia will know about the innovations sooner, understand the work better, and have an opportunity to move things into manufacturing faster," he said.

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