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Intel Open-Sources BigDL, Distributed Deep Learning Library for Apache Spark

by Alexandre Rodrigues on  Jan 13, 2017

Intel open-sources BigDL, a distributed deep learning library that runs on Apache Spark. It leverages existing Spark clusters to run deep learning computations and simplifies the data loading from big datasets stored in Hadoop.

Amazon Introduces Rekognition for Image Analysis

by Kent Weare on  Jan 08, 2017 1

At the AWS re:Invent conference, Amazon launched Rekognition, a managed service for Image Recognition and Analysis, powered by Deep Learning. The capabilities that Rekognition provides include Object and Scene detection, Facial Analysis, Face Comparison and Facial Recognition. The service attempts to extract meaning from visual content for the 1.2 Trillion pictures captured annually.

Mathieu Ripert on Instacart's Machine Learning Optimizations

by Alexandre Rodrigues on  Jan 05, 2017

Instacart is an online delivery service for groceries under one hour. Customers order the items on the website or using the mobile app, and a group of Instacart’s shoppers go to local stores, purchase the items and deliver them to the customer. InfoQ interviewed Mathieu Ripert, data scientist at Instacart, to find out how machine learning is leveraged to guarantee a better customer experience.

Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS) Gains FIFO Queues

by Steffen Opel on  Dec 31, 2016

Amazon's Simple Queue Service (SQS) recently gained FIFO (first-in, first-out) queues, which are designed to "guarantee that messages are processed exactly once, in the order that they are sent, and without duplicates". AWS rolled out this new queue type in the US East (Ohio) and US West (Oregon) regions and "plans to make it available in many others in early 2017".

Microsoft Launches Cloud Bot-as-a-Service Platform

by Kent Weare on  Dec 28, 2016 1

This past November, Microsoft launched, what it is calling, the Industry’s First Cloud Bot-as-a-Service platform. The Azure Bot Service is powered by the Microsoft Bot Framework and has a serverless compute back-end built on Azure Functions. Using the Bot service allows developers to build conversational applications that plug into many popular chat applications.

Building Conversational Apps Using Actions on Google and API.AI

by Kent Weare on  Dec 26, 2016

Google has introduced Actions on Google which allow developers to build Google Assistant-based conversational apps, including integration with the Google Home device.

Azure Functions Reach General Availability

by Kent Weare on  Dec 10, 2016 2

Microsoft recently announced an addition to its Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering called Azure Functions. Initially launched as a preview service in March 2016, Azure Functions provide developers with an event-driven serverless compute platform that allow organizations to pay for only what they consume.

Building Conversational and Text Interfaces Using Amazon Lex

by Kent Weare on  Dec 09, 2016

At the recent AWS re:Invent conference, Amazon introduced a preview of their deep learning technology called Amazon Lex which can be used to build conversational interfaces using voice and text. Amazon Lex is powered on the same deep learning technology as Alexa, which is used in the portable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enabled Amazon Echo speaker.

AWS re:Invent Recap

by Richard Seroter on  Dec 04, 2016

At their annual re:Invent conference in Las Vegas, AWS unleashed a flurry of announcements about upcoming cloud services. Amazon outlined over two dozen new capabilities coming to the public cloud, including directly querying data in S3 object storage, building code as part of deployment pipelines, provisioning cheap virtual private servers, and moving data in bulk, ETL-style.

Amazon Launches Lightsail Virtual Private Servers

by Chris Swan on  Dec 04, 2016

Amazon has launched Lightsail, a Virtual Private Server (VPS) service to compete with companies like Digital Ocean, Linode and the multitude of Low End Box providers. The service bundles a basic Linux virtual machine with SSD storage and a bandwidth allowance. Pricing starts at $5/month with tiers by RAM allocation. Each larger configuration comes with more storage and bandwidth.

Amazon Releases 'AWS X-Ray' Distributed Tracing Service in Preview

by Daniel Bryant on  Dec 04, 2016

At the AWS re:Invent 2016 conference, held in Las Vegas, USA, a distributed tracing service named AWS X-Ray was released in preview within all 12 public AWS Regions. In a similar fashion to Google’s Dapper, Twitter’s Zipkin and the OpenTracing API, AWS X-Ray helps developers analyse and debug distributed applications, such as those built using a microservices architectural style.

Amazon Introduces AWS Batch Preview

by Kent Weare on  Dec 04, 2016

At the recent AWS Re:Invent event, Amazon announced a new preview service, called AWS Batch. AWS Batch allows organizations to optimize their scheduling and workload execution across a cloud-based landscape. Amazon has built this service in response to many AWS customers building their own batch platforms using EC2 instances, containers and CloudWatch.

Amazon Announces AWS Shield for DDoS Protection

by Kent Weare on  Dec 03, 2016

At the recent re:Invent 2016 event, Amazon announced a new service called AWS Shield, which provides customers with protection from Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. This announcement comes just over a month after Amazon was impacted by a DDoS attack on a DNS provider that Amazon used, Dynamic Network Services (Dyn).

AWS Launches Amazon Linux Container Image

by Steffen Opel on  Nov 28, 2016

AWS recently launched a Docker container image for its Amazon Linux operating system, complementing the EC2 specific Amazon Linux AMI with a versatile deployment option for custom cloud and on-premise environments. The image is available through the Amazon EC2 Container Registry (Amazon ECR), and also as an official repository on Docker Hub.

The AWS Well-Architected Framework Adds Operational Excellence

by Abel Avram on  Nov 25, 2016

Amazon has updated their AWS Well-Architected Framework (PDF) based on feedback from clients, adding a new pillar, Operational Excellence.

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