You’ve likely heard of artificial intelligence. But in a new post on Microsoft’s company blog, CEO Satya Nadella envisions a revolutionary era of “ambient intelligence.”

This is a future in which “nearly all interactions and experiences between humans, humans and computers and between computers get digitized.”

Nadella points to car dashboards, light switches, HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems and even sneakers as products that could one day “gain the capacity to listen to us, respond to us, understand us and act on our behalf.”

In order to achieve a system of ambient intelligence -- which may sound either intensely creepy or droolworthy, depending on your persuasion -- Nadella advocates the development of a “data culture.”

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If data is the fuel for creating an internet of things, in other words, information and insight should come from unexpected and diverse sources within a company -- across all departments and executive ranks, Nadella describes.

In his third public appearance since being named CEO, Nadella spoke to developers in San Francisco yesterday outlining this very philosophy, and unveiled new products for corporate clients that “manage web-linked devices and crunch the information they generate,” according to Bloomberg.

Nadella also took the opportunity to note that Microsoft Office happens to serve as an ideal platform for data display and sharing.

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