I was recently challenged to photograph for a feature about how Microsoft are applying their computer research, for system design to quantum computing and data visualization, to solve one of the most complex and deadly challenges humans face: Cancer.
We decided to photograph a series of portraits of the main protagonists involved in the project to be supported by some graphics to illustrate the actual work.
It is one of the privileges of being a photographer to work with incredible organisations, photograph remarkable people and be part of a project that is potentially going to profoundly impact not only our ability to understand how biological systems work but also to program them.
Microsoft is trying to change the way research is done on a daily basis in biology.
One team of researchers is using machine learning and natural language processing to help the world’s leading oncologists figure out the most effective, individualized cancer treatment for their patients, by providing an intuitive way to sort through all the research data available.
Another is pairing machine learning with computer vision to give radiologists a more detailed understanding of how their patients’ tumors are progressing.
Yet another group of researchers has created powerful algorithms that help scientists understand how cancers develop and what treatments will work best to fight them.
And another team is working on moonshot efforts that could one day allow scientists to program cells to fight diseases, including cancer.