Back in mid-2016 Microsoft announced the Microsoft Professional Program (MPP). The MPP program is an online certification/”degree” program from Microsoft that allows anyone to study and obtain a larger certification (that is also similar to an online micro-degree) in a specific area of expertise. In the past, the program consisted of 5 programs to choose from, but recent Microsoft has added the sixth track of choice to the Microsoft Professional Program. Recently, Microsoft has added a brand new “IT Support” track to the Microsoft Professional Program. This sixth track certainly rounds out the MPP program to cover a very broad array of technology areas that ANYONE can study, learn, obtain certification/degree, and CHANGE THEIR LIFE by filling the skills gap! Read More
Thomson Reuters has released their first Top 100 Global Technology Leaders list to define new criteria for determining leadership in the 21st century. They’ve already been tracking tons of metrics on companies all around the world for their clients, and have decided to combine it all to create this new list. Thomson Reuters feels they’ve created a first-of-its-kind ranking methodology for the technology sector.
Spoiler: Microsoft ranked #1! Read More
Personal Assistants. Are they relevant, or just a fad like the Nintendo Wii? There seem to be personal assistants being added to everything, from smartphones, to watches, to speakers. And now, a Personal Assistant is coming to Microsoft Azure. Microsoft is reviving Clippy to be the Cloud Assistant you need for helping work with and maintaining your Microsoft Azure cloud resources. Read More
Out of the MANY different announcements made today is included the fact that Microsoft has created a new logo for the Microsoft Azure cloud. The old logo could be described as a cloud with a module connected to it. It wasn’t exceptional, but it was unique to Microsoft Azure. Today, Microsoft released a brand new logo for Microsoft Azure. Not only that! But, Microsoft has released a new “Azure Manifesto” video as well to inspire all of us “change agents” to unlock the power of the cloud!
For a long time, since the beginning of Microsoft Azure, the most granular control you could have for choosing what servers / hardware to host a workload on has been the Azure Region. Each Azure Region is made up of at least 2 or 3 datacenters, but you didn’t have control over which data center was used or how replication was really controlled amongst the datacenters in a particular region. However, now Microsoft Azure has the ability to use Availability Zones to increase the resiliency and high availability of services hosted in a single Azure Region. These Availability Zones now offer a more granular control over hosting workloads in Azure beyond just choosing the less granular Azure Region to host in. Read More
Microsoft Ignite 2017 is less than a week away. Microsoft has already been busy making changes to Microsoft Azure ahead of time. While it’s unclear what all the announcements for Azure will be at Ignite 2017, it’s clear there are certain “smaller” changes / updates that will be announced / discussed. This article highlights a few Microsoft Azure service updates and Preview features that are publicly available today; that we will likely learn much more about at Ignite next week. Read More
One of the most common complaints about Azure Virtual Machine (VM) pricing is that it’s too expensive for small workloads. For custom web applications you could share an App Service Plan, which is great if the app can be hosted within Azure App Service. However, if your workload needs a full VM, then there wasn’t really a great option unless you were willing to share a VM with multiple applications. This can pose many management difficulties. Thankfully, Microsoft has been listening to feedback of wanting an even more cost effective and affordable cloud for smaller workloads too. The Azure B-Series VM sizes are the answer to this, and instead being “just cheaper VMs” they offer an innovative advancement to Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). Read More
In the early days of Microsoft Azure, there was a single Message Queue service; the Azure Storage Queue. This was way back in early 2010, however, soon after that Microsoft introduced another messaging service called Service Bus; then soon after another, and another! Over the years, there have been a few different messaging and message queue services introduced into the Microsoft Azure platform. Each of these messaging services are a little different than each other and offer a pretty wide range of messaging offerings to choose from. This article walks through the primary features of each of the Microsoft Azure messaging services, and will help give you an understanding of when to use each for your own applications and enterprise scenarios. Read More
On August 11, 2017, it was announced that OpenAI beat the world’s top professionals at 1v1 matches of Dota 2 tournament under standard rules. The bot’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) learned the game from scratch through self-play. This is a feat of achievement for AI as Elon Musk states this is “vastly more complex than traditional board games like chess & Go.” Shortly after it was announced that the AI bot won the tournament, Elon Musk also tweeted out his appreciation and thanks to Microsoft for using the Microsoft Azure cloud computing platform and it’s “massive processing power” to win the tournament. This is a really great example of how the massive computing power of Microsoft Azure can be used, in addition to yet another stepping stone in the path towards much more advanced Artificial Intelligence (AI). Read More
In the early days of Microsoft Azure, back in 2010 when it was called Windows Azure, Microsoft had announced plans to make the Azure services available to be run / hosted in on-premises datacenter. Shortly after the announcement they released Azure Pack which wasn’t quite what we had all hoped for. Then about 2 years ago, Microsoft started talking about “Azure in your datacenter” again! The started talking about this new product offering called Azure Stack. We’ve seen a couple technical previews of Azure Stack so far, but not much in the way of a GA (Generally Available) release. That is until now. This week, Microsoft announced that in coordination with hardware OEMs you can now order Azure Stack integrated system hardware, with the first systems beginning to ship in September. There is also some pricing information, and an Azure Stack Development Kit (ASDK) being made available.
This is an exciting time for Azure Stack, now that we can finally see it all coming together where we’ll finally be able to run Azure services natively in on-premises datacenter or absolutely anywhere else. Read More