Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Windows Copilot+ AI Features

Microsoft (Hacker News, MacRumors, Ryan Jones):

Now with Recall, you can access virtually what you have seen or done on your PC in a way that feels like having photographic memory. Copilot+ PCs organize information like we do – based on relationships and associations unique to each of our individual experiences. This helps you remember things you may have forgotten so you can find what you’re looking for quickly and intuitively by simply using the cues you remember.


Combine your ink strokes with text prompts to generate new images in nearly real time with Cocreator. As you iterate, so does the artwork, helping you more easily refine, edit and evolve your ideas. Powerful diffusion-based algorithms optimize for the highest quality output over minimum steps to make it feel like you are creating alongside AI. Use the creativity slider to choose from a range of artwork from more literal to more expressive.


Live Captions now has live translations and will turn any audio that passes through your PC into a single, English-language caption experience, in real time on your screen across all your apps consistently. You can translate any live or pre-recorded audio in any app or video platform from over 40 languages into English subtitles instantly, automatically and even while you’re offline.


Eye contact teleprompter helps you maintain eye contact while reading your screen. New improvements to voice focus and portrait blur help ensure you’re always in focus.


Every Copilot+ PC comes with your personal powerful AI agent that is just a single tap away on keyboards with the new Copilot key. Copilot will now have the full application experience customers have been asking for in a streamlined, simple yet powerful and personal design. Copilot puts the most advanced AI models at your fingertips. In the coming weeks, get access to the latest models including GPT-4o from our partners at OpenAI, so you can have voice conversations that feel more natural.

Dare Obasanjo:

Recall reminds me of Stuff I’ve Seen, a 2003 Microsoft Research project to help solve the problem of finding content you’d previously seen. The big problem then was most stuff you saw was on websites not local files.

Recall uses screenshots to solve this.

Matt Birchler:

If you saw this feature and thought, “huh, that sure looks like Limitless,” you would be absolutely right. Just a few weeks ago I suggested Apple should buy Limitless and build it into macOS natively, but Microsoft beat them to the punch by just building it themselves.

It’s an absolute classic Sherlocking, but it totally makes sense. The second I saw Rewind 2 years ago I knew it was something cool, but that was exactly the sort of feature that only works for more people if it’s built by the OS provider. Microsoft is already dealing with privacy concerns with it, so you can only imagine how people feel about letting a VC-funded company they’ve never heard of record everything they do, even if it’s all local, all encrypted, and theoretically actually private in the way people want.

John Gruber:

Recall can “view” and remember everything that appears on screen because it’s integrated with the Windows 11 graphics system. That’s the sort of “AI feature” that truly benefits from being a first-party solution that can integrate at lower levels of the OS than third-party apps can.

Rui Carmo:

I’m a bit skeptical on the concept (even though I did use Windows 10 timeline a fair bit), but I find it rather telling that a key future Windows feature is tied to ARM processors (plus their NPUs, sure, but it’s a key sign that Intel lost the plot here).

Ben Thompson:

That celebration, though, is not because Windows is differentiating the rest of Microsoft, but because the rest of Microsoft is now differentiating Windows. Nadella’s focus on AI and the company’s massive investments in compute are the real drivers of the business, and, going forward, are real potential drivers of Windows.


Nadella, similarly, needed to break up Windows and end Ballmer’s dreams of vertical domination so that the company could build a horizontal services business that, a few years later, could actually make Windows into a differentiated operating system that might, for the first time in years, actually drive new customer acquisition.


Update (2024-05-29): Nick Heer:

Recall is the kind of feature I have always wanted but I am not sure I would ever enable. Setting aside Microsoft’s recent high-profile security problems, it seems like there is a new risk in keeping track of everything you see on your computer — bank accounts, a list of passwords, messages, work documents and other things sent by a third-party which they expect to be confidential, credit card information — for a rolling three month window.

See also: Bruce Schneier and Ben Thompson.

2 Comments RSS · Twitter · Mastodon

The Recall announcement reminds me a bit of the announcement of Spotlight in OS X 10.4 Tiger. Sure, Sherlock was available as an application in previous MacOS and OS X versions, and you could download third-party utilities that expanded Windows’ search features, but Spotlight was built into the OS, and it was good.

Nick Heer over at Pixel Envy is spot on

"Recall is the kind of feature I have always wanted but I am not sure I would ever enable."

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