05

Mar

Microsoft releases automation for HIPAA/HITRUST compliance
Microsoft releases automation for HIPAA/HITRUST compliance

I am excited to share our new Azure Security and Compliance Blueprint for HIPAA/HITRUST – Health Data & AI. Microsoft’s Azure Blueprints are resources to help build and launch cloud-powered applications that comply with stringent regulations and standards. Included in the blueprints are reference architectures, compliance guidance and deployment scripts.

“The best part of the Azure Security & Compliance Blueprint is that it encompasses the exact Azure services architecture required to help customers meet their HIPAA and HITRUST security, privacy, and compliance obligations, along with supporting documentation and a fully-automated deployment process.”

– Tibi Popp, CTO, Archive360

Health organizations all over the world are looking to leverage the power of AI and the cloud to improve outcomes, accelerate performance, and enable the vision of precision medicine. “We are enthusiastic about the potential to foster multi-institutional collaborative environments for data sharing and machine learning,” said Chuck Mayo, PhD at the University of Michigan Medicine. Microsoft is working  to meet these challenges with Healthcare NExT, an initiative which aims to accelerate healthcare innovation through artificial intelligence and cloud computing, while at the same time working to protect the privacy and confidentiality of patients.

“We are entrusted with our customer’s

05

Mar

New app usage monitoring capabilities in Application Insights

Our goal with Azure Monitoring tools is to provide full-stack monitoring for your applications. The top of this “stack” isn’t the client-side of your app, it’s your users themselves. Understanding user behavior is critical for making the right changes to your apps to drive the metrics your business cares about.

Recent improvements to the usage analytics tools in Application Insights can help your team better understand overall usage, dive deep into the impact of performance on customer experience, and give more visibility into user flows.

A faster, more insightful experience for Users, Sessions, and Events

Understanding application usage is critical to making smart investments with your development team. An application can be fast, reliable, and highly available, but if it doesn’t have many users, it’s not contributing value to your business.

The Users, Sessions, and Events tools in Application Insights make it easy to answer the most basic usage analytics question, “How much does my application and each of its features get used?”

We’ve re-built the Users, Sessions, and Events tools to make them even more responsive. A new sidebar of daily and monthly usage metrics help you spot growth and retention trends. Clicking on each metric gives you

05

Mar

What’s brewing in Visual Studio Team Services: March 2018 Digest

This post series provides the latest updates and news for Visual Studio Team Services and is a great way for Azure users to keep up-to-date with new features being released every three weeks. Visual Studio Team Services offers the best DevOps tooling to create an efficient continuous integration and release pipeline to Azure. With the rapidly expanding list of features in Team Services, teams can start to leverage it more efficiently for all areas of their Azure workflow, for apps written in any language and deployed to any OS.

Azure Red Shirt Dev Tour: Our VSTS account

Scott Guthrie has been traveling the world on a tour he’s called the Azure Red Shirt Dev Tour. As part of that, he shows the account our team uses to build VSTS. That’s right – we use VSTS to plan, build, test, and release VSTS. See what VSTS looks like for a large team in Scott’s demo of VSTS using our account (mseng.visualstudio.com) – showing ongoing work on VSTS live on stage – from the New York City stop on the tour. If you want to go deep on how our team works, check out DevOps at Microsoft.

Roadmap Update

We periodically

04

Mar

Azure Government – technology innovation shaping the future

From the state and local level to the largest federal agencies, U.S. Government customers are using Azure to transform how they meet the needs of citizens. We’re seeing strong growth on Microsoft Azure Government, the mission-critical cloud, delivering the latest innovation to over 7,000 U.S. Government customers and their partners. We remain highly focused on meeting the accelerating demand for cloud services that support the most stringent security and compliance requirements of our government customers.

Our customers serve in every federal cabinet agency and across the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps. We have supported over 500 million government authentications and every eight minutes we add a new 1 TB drive. Our growing ecosystem includes more than 500 offerings and 350+ partners in the marketplace, recently reaching 2.5M compute usage hours per month.

We are seeing continued momentum in utilizing the cloud for sensitive workloads with recent ATOs issued for the U.S. Air Force and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The Air Force is rapidly transforming systems with a PaaS-first environment to deliver modern apps and exploit cloud scale and agility to reduce capital expenditures and more effectively focus resources on their mission. The FedRAMP High ATO for ICE

04

Mar

Gartner reaffirms Microsoft as a leader in Data Management Solutions for Analytics

We are excited to announce that Microsoft has once again been positioned as a leader in Gartner’s 2018 Magic Quadrant for Data Management Solutions for Analytics (DMSA). Gartner has also positioned Microsoft as a leader in the Magic Quadrant for Analytics and Business Intelligence Platforms, and in the Magic Quadrant for Operational Database Management Systems. This is an exciting milestone, and it is Microsoft’s perspective that this underscores our global leadership and its relentless commitment to innovation across the data estate.

Gartner defines DMSA as a complete software system that supports and manages data in one or more file management systems (usually databases). DMSA includes specific optimizations to support analytical processing. This includes, but is not limited to, support for relational processing, nonrelational processing (such as graph processing), and machine learning and programming languages such as Python and R.

Source: Gartner (February, 2018)*

At Microsoft, we’ve championed a data platform evolution to make big data processing and analytics simpler and more accessible, helping you transform data into intelligent action. We do this through SQL Server 2017 and key Azures services: Azure SQL Data Warehouse (a fully managed, MPP architecture cloud data warehouse), Azure Databricks (an Apache Spark-based analytics platform)

04

Mar

BI Bake Off at Gartner Data and Analytics Summit 2018
BI Bake Off at Gartner Data and Analytics Summit 2018

https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/bi-bake-off-at-gartner-data-and-analytics-summit-2018/Source: https://powerbi.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/bi-bake-off-at-gartner-data-and-analytics-summit-2018/           Today we presented at the BI Bake Off session at Gartner Data and Analytics Summit in Grapevine, Texas and we are happy to share the report with everyone in this post.

02

Mar

Updates to Azure Database for MySQL and Azure Database for PostgreSQL

Azure database services for MySQL and PostgreSQL are fully managed, enterprise-ready services built using community version of MySQL and PostgreSQL database engines respectively. These services come with built-in high availability and ability to elastically scale compute and storage independently in seconds, helping you to easily adjust resources and respond faster to market and customer demands. Additionally, you benefit from unparalleled security and compliance, Azure IP advantage, as well as Azure’s industry leading global reach.

Since we announced these services in preview last year, users have been providing feedback helping drive product improvements and new features. As part of executing on customer feedback, I am really excited to announce the changes to the pricing model that will provide customers with more flexibility and help optimize costs.

Pricing tiers

Since the preview launch, we have been offering the Basic and Standard pricing tiers. We are continuing with the Basic tier, re-naming Standard to General Purpose and introducing a new premium tier called Memory Optimized to cater to workloads requiring faster in-memory performance. For more information about the General Purpose and Memory Optimized tiers, and when to use them, visit MySQL and PostgreSQL documentation.

Changing from “compute units” to vCores

Beginning today you

01

Mar

Now Available: Access to Source Code & Demos of AI-Infused Apps

This post is authored by Tara Shankar Jana, Senior Technical Product Marketing Manager at Microsoft.

The success of enterprises in adopting AI to solve real-world problems hinges on bringing a comprehensive set of AI services, tools and infrastructure to every developer, so they can deliver AI-powered apps of the future that offer unique, differentiated and personalized experiences. In this blog post, we are sharing source code and other resources that demonstrate how easy it is for existing developers without deep AI expertise to start building such personalized data-driven app experiences of the future.

To start off, what are the key characteristics of such AI apps? We would expect them to be intelligent and get even smarter over time. We expect them to deliver new experiences, removing barriers between people and technology. And we want them to help us make sense of the huge amount of data that is all around us, to deliver those better experiences.

 Let us take you through the journey of building such apps.

1. Infusing AI

Artificial Intelligence is anything that makes machines smart. Although machine learning is a technique for achieving that goal, what if, instead of creating custom ML models, you could directly start

01

Mar

Azure Data Lake launches in the West Europe region
Azure Data Lake launches in the West Europe region

Azure Data Lake Store and Azure Data Lake Analytics are now generally available in the West Europe region, in addition to the previously announced regions of East US 2, Central US, and North Europe.

Azure Data Lake Store is a hyperscale enterprise data lake in the cloud that is secure, massively scalable, and built to the open HDFS standard. Data from disparate data sources can be brought together into a single data lake so that all your analytics can run in one place. From first class integration with AAD to fine grained access control, built-in enterprise grade security makes managing security easy for even the largest organizations. With no limits to the size of data and the ability to run massively parallel analytics, you can now unlock value from all your analytics data at ultra-fast speeds.

Azure Data Lake Analytics is a distributed on-demand analytics job service that dynamically scales so you can focus on achieving your business goals, not on managing distributed infrastructure. The analytics service can handle jobs of any scale by letting you select how many parallel compute resources a job can scale to. You only pay for your job when it is running, making it cost-effective.

01

Mar

Announcing new milestones for Microsoft Cognitive Services vision and search services in Azure

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has emerged as one of the most disruptive forces behind the digital transformation of business. At Microsoft, we believe everyone—developers, data scientists and enterprises—should have access to the benefits of AI to augment human ingenuity in unique and differentiated ways. We’ve been conducting research in AI for more than two decades and infusing it into our products and services. Now we’re bringing it to everyone through simple, yet powerful tools. One of those tools is Microsoft Cognitive Services, a collection of cloud-hosted APIs that let developers easily add AI capabilities for vision, speech, language, knowledge and search into applications, across devices and platforms such as iOS, Android and Windows.

To date more than a million developers have already discovered and tried our Cognitive Services, and many new customers are harnessing the power of AI, such as major auto insurance provider Progressive best known for Flo, its iconic spokesperson. The company wanted to take advantage of customers’ increasing use of mobile channels to interact with its brand. Progressive used Microsoft Azure Bot Service and Cognitive Services to quickly and easily build the Flo Chatbot—currently available on Facebook Messenger—which answers customer questions, provides quotes and even offers a bit