(4 May 2021) From Microsoft press release:
Microsoft Research will continue to support the automated AI agents powering Microsoft Academic services through the end of calendar year 2021. During this time, we encourage existing Microsoft Academic users to begin transitioning to other equivalent services. Below are just a few of the many great options available to the community.
Thank you very much for the years of support and encouragement. We are immensely grateful to have learned and grown from your feedback over the years. As we are passing the torch to the community-driven efforts, we invite you to join us in continuously contributing ideas and suggestions to nurture, embrace, and grow these platforms.
Q: What is happening to Microsoft Academic Services (MAS)?
A: Microsoft Academic set out to demonstrate AI-curated knowledge can effectively assist humans in making serendipitous discoveries and deriving valuable insights. After seven years of developing the machine reading technology and working with the research community, we have chosen to embrace a community-driven approach within academia and now turn our focus to exploring ways we can extend this technology to even more people and organizations. The automated AI powering MAS will be supported until the end of calendar year 2021, upon which time MAS will be retired.
What this means for each service:
- Microsoft Academic Website: No longer accessible after Dec. 31, 2021
- Project Academic Knowledge: No longer accessible after Dec. 31, 2021
- Microsoft Academic Graph/Microsoft Academic Knowledge Exploration Service: No longer providing updated data or access to old releases after Dec. 31, 2021; however, existing copies can still be used under license.
Q: Why is Microsoft retiring MAS?
A: MAS was conceived seven years ago in response to feedback from our colleagues in academia where the inequality in accessing large datasets presented a significant obstacle to conducting research and cultivating talents in the areas of Big Data and AI. With MAS, we have been proud to contribute to a culture of open exchange and a growing ecosystem of collaborators. As MAS has achieved its objective to remove the data access barriers for our research colleagues, it is the right time to explore other opportunities to give back to communities outside of academia.
Q: What will happen to the customers using the service?
The press release in full can be found here.
Microsoft’s decision will impact other tools that relied on its database and raises questions about relying on private firms. THE has talked to a few professionals who share their concerns here (login required).