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Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) recently hired fourteen former Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) researchers for their New York City lab. Just last month, the search giant laid off about 2,000 employees in order to cut costs. The new lab has yet to open.

The reason Microsoft hired their competitor’s former employees really has nothing to do with one-upping their competition. According to Jennifer Chayes, the manager for Microsoft Research in New England, the researchers were hired as a group but as individuals.

Duncan Watts, David Pennock, and John Langford are among the list of former Yahoo employees who now work for Microsoft. Watts is a social network researcher who says he’s excited to work on Microsoft’s products like Xbox, Hotmail, Skype, and MSN Messenger. Pennock will work with computer science and economics, and Langford will work with interactive machine learning.

The new Microsoft researchers will join their efforts with over 850 Ph.D. researchers. Their job will be to interact with academic and tech communities in the immediate area in hopes to expand their presence. Ideally, they want to reach out to prestigious universities like Rutgers, Columbia, New York University, Princeton, and Cornell-Technion. They want to take part of the sector that merges computer science with social sciences.

It’s great that Microsoft recruited former Yahoo employees. The fourteen new researchers will be able to utilize their talents and collaborate their efforts to create better products and services. It’s a win-win situation for the company and new employees.

Other notable names on the team include Jake Hoffman, Sharad Goel, David Rothschild, Dan Goldstein, and Sidharth Suri.

Microsoft may not be the most favored technology company but they deserve credit where credit is due. They may not have the biggest search engine like Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) or the most innovative products like Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), but they create products and services that people utilize for business and everyday life, and that’s more than we can ask for.