The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, or IEEE, has presented yet another award to Microsoft Research. This time, the award is the "Distinguished synergy award," and Microsoft Research earned it by facilitating a close and productive relationship between academia and engineers. The award is given to Microsoft in a computer science landscape where this sort of collaboration is somewhat rare, and academics don't brush shoulders with professionals as much as they ought to.
Microsoft is one of the few places that is willing to let academics study actual working programmers, and because Microsoft uses a wide variety of software development methodologies across all of their products and services, we are able to find representatives of any group we want to focus on. - Brad Myers
This award is just another notch in Microsoft's belt when it comes to excellence in the industry, as the IEEE have given them several accolades already. These awards range anywhere between synergy awards like this one, to research leadership awards, to two different technical achievement awards. While the specific purposes of the awards differ, the fact that they're constantly headed Microsoft's way proves that the tech giant is one of the most beneficial organizations out there for academic computer scientists and professional engineers alike.
Beyond praising Microsoft Research's work bringing together students and professionals, the IEEE also cited the open source materials that the team had pushed out to help academics, including Pex and the game version of Pex, Code Hunt. The availability of those two open source tools helped students to advance their knowledge about programming or get into it for the first time, and made significant contributions to the computer science world because of that.