Realmadrid App for passionate fans, tools to fight human trafficking and new research to keep data safe in the cloud – Weekend Reading: May 22nd edition

 |   Vanessa Ho

Welcome to another edition of Weekend Reading. Microsoft technology and employees played big roles in many ways this week, from powering the passion of soccer fans to building a “lockbox in the cloud” to connecting students thousands of miles apart. Before you start your holiday weekend, take a quick spin through the news.

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Microsoft and Real Madrid C.F. continued their technological revolution of futbol and the club with the release of the Realmadrid App, a new way for the club’s 450 million passionate, global fans to connect with their favorite team.

Built on the Microsoft Cloud platform, the app features multi-angle match viewing, fan competitions, game replays, comprehensive player and team stats, and lots more.

“The new app truly empowers the fans’ passion no matter where they are in the world,” writes Orlando Ayala, Microsoft chairman and corporate vice president of Emerging Businesses. Part of a vision to digitally transform the sports industry, the app is available for Windows Phone, IOS and Android.

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Microsoft technology also has a key role in a completely different arena: combatting human trafficking. Arthur Thomas (A.T.) Ball, Microsoft’s managing director of Public Safety and National Security in Asia, highlighted the company’s efforts to “help disrupt the global scourge of human trafficking.”

The efforts include the work by the Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit and PhotoDNA, an image-matching technology that helps identify and rescue online child pornography victims.

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It was a big week for Microsoft researchers, who debuted their “lockbox in the cloud,” a new system to store data in the cloud, even when it’s being accessed to make calculations.

The new technology, called Verifiable Confidential Cloud Computing or VC3, gives an extra layer of security to companies that safeguard very sensitive information, such as financial data or personal records. The innovative project was released Monday at the IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy.

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Have a giant to-do list? Good thing Office is continuing its transformation into a cross-platform, cross-device solution to help you get more done. The Preview of Office apps for Android phones debuted this week, combining the familiar look and quality of Office with a touch-friendly design for Android phones.

Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents open and render beautifully, and navigation is easy for on-the-go reading, reviewing and editing.

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Microsoft’s new Tech Talent for Good program again lived up to its name, when a group of Microsoft employees used their tech skills to support troops and their families at a recently remodeled USO center at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

The employees prepped 20 Surface tablets with updated software and apps for the center, so soldiers, sailors and their families can use them at the airport while traveling. Being able to email, Skype with a loved one, or play “Call of Duty” and “Minecraft” helps ease the journey.

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Skype in the Classroom also helped connect people thousands of miles of apart. Independent journalist Anna Therese Day helped students on the Pacific island of Kiribati Skype with students in Seattle, while reporting on the impact of climate change on the island’s future.

Timid at first, the Kiribati students sang songs in English and talked about their chores, which included feeding the pigs. That prompted one Seattle boy to exclaim, “You guys get to have pigs?!”

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In app and game news (besides the Realmadrid App), visual stunner “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” became available for Xbox One. The new Salesforce App for Outlook became available for free. And this week’s Red Stripe Deals went old-school, with discounts for “Dragon’s Lair,” a flashback to the ‘80s arcade game, and “Final Fantasy III,” whose first title dates back to the early ‘90s.

Finally, on our global adventure to find people who #DoMore on the Microsoft Instagram page, we met Jeremy Lacy, the artist behind Downshift Studio, a collection of motorcycle and car concept designs he creates with the help of a Surface Pro 3.

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Thanks for reading and we’ll see you next week!

Posted by Vanessa Ho
Microsoft News Center Staff

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