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This week on the GeekWire radio show, we’re listening back to highlights from Bill Gates’ recent public appearance in Redmond for a major Microsoft Research event with academic researchers from around the world. In his introduction, Gates started with his thoughts on the state of technology today and where things are headed over the next decade.

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Bill Gates at the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit. (Microsoft photo)

“I think it’s fair to say that we’re in a golden age of computer science,” he said, explaining that the original dream of infinite computing and infinite storage is practically a reality today. “It’s amazing for me to see how that’s being applied” in areas including computer vision, speech recognition, pen input, data-intensive modeling and machine learning, he said.

He explained, “It really seems like that idea of a powerful assistant that can help get things done, help drive deep insights, that the progress that we’ll make in the next five years, 10 years will be really unbelievable.”

During the show, my colleague John Cook and I also weigh in with our own thoughts on Gates’ comments, and the irony of the fact that Microsoft itself hasn’t capitalized on these trends as much as some of its larger rivals.

The Q&A session at the event brought out a wide range of topics, including Gates’ thoughts on his fellow billionaires and the potential to make an impact on the world; his take on the potential of robots; and more on the idea of digital assistants, and the possibility that Microsoft Bob was simply ahead of its time.

And in the last segment, we listen back to a great exchange from 2011 between Gates and a University of Washington student who asked him for tips on becoming a billionaire like him.

See this previous post to watch Gates’ entire talk at the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit.

App of the Week: Here are the 8 books Bill Gates is reading this summer. (Under the theory that books are the original apps.)

Name that Tech Tune: Do you know your Windows trivia?

Listen to the show above or directly via this MP3 file.

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