CodeMash 2011

PreCompiler: An Introduction to Azure

Steve Ballmer has made it very clear that Microsoft is “all in” when it comes to the cloud and by now most have heard about Microsoft’s Windows Azure platform… but what does that mean for you? Whether you are an experienced .NET developer who is wondering what all this cloud stuff means for how you write code, or maybe you are a traditional *nix developer looking to understand how to integrate your existing code with the Microsoft version of the cloud, join us for an in-depth discussion on what Platform as a Service is, how Microsoft has implemented it, what scenarios it best addresses, and a collection of hands-on-labs to get you started.
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PreCompiler: An Introduction to Amazon Web Services

AWS has been in the cloud computing space longer than most anyone, and they are the de facto standard when it comes to Infrastructure as a Service. While most developers are comfortable with the notion of virtual machines, reviewing the AWS offering can sometimes look like alphabet soup (EC2, S3, SNS, SDB, SQS). Join us to learn the power behind these acronyms and the tools that they can provide your next project. We’ll discuss the major components, some of the trade-offs between different implementation choices (i.e. boot from S3/boot from EBS, etc.) and provide you with the opportunity to work through some labs, deploy some code, and begin to experience the Amazon cloud for yourself. Examples are in .NET, but fundamental concepts apply to all platforms.
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FedScoop (invited guest post)

Digital Forensics and the Cloud

(Excerpt) I work with a research group that generally focuses on text analysis/mining and Bayesian networks, but recently applied their strengths to the area of digital forensics. Specifically, they developed tools that are used by local police departments to aid in the prosecution of child pornographers. In one of our more recent meetings, we began discussing the role that cloud computing can play in this problem domain – how can it help, how can it hurt, what work needs to be done to address the resultant issues. While our collaboration effort is still in the nascent stages, we’ve established a handful of “known’s” that are worthy of broader conversation. As with most technologies, there is both a good and a dark side to the use of cloud computing. My goal in this article is not to paint the cloud with a black brush, but rather to highlight some unique issues and call to mind challenges that exist and must be dealt with.
Full Article

Cloud Computing: Beyond the Buzz

(Excerpt) Everyone (or so it seems) is talking about the cloud...
I have the privilege of being on the ground, working every day with these technologies and I’m seeing the actual transformation – the people who are beginning to embrace it, the scientists who are interested in using it, and some of the problems it has actually solved. Rather than hyping an idea or pushing a particular technology, I thought I’d take this opportunity to discuss some examples of the work we’ve been involved with and where we think it is headed.
Full Article

Petascale Data Analytics on Clouds: Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities (PDAC-10)

Maximizing Data Throughput in Windows Azure

In this paper we consider the problem of data movment in the Windows Azure cloud computing environment as a representation of similarly designed Platform as a Service (PaaS) infrastructures. We evaluate the standard application programming interfaces (APIs) and provided client libraries. We then consider various extensions to those APIs and libraries with the objective of maximizing the realized transfer rate. We explore these interactions both within the datacenter - a specific Windows Azure facility - as well as external to the datacenter. Specifically, we explore alternative transfer approaches such as data chunking, parallelization of data transfer threads, data proxies, and compression and provide evidence to suggest the appropriate scenarios in which to utilize these optimizations.
Workshop Website

NASA Goddard: IT Matters - Panel on Cloud Computing

Evaluation of Cloud Computing for Scientific Discovery

This talk was similar to some of the others I’ve given on the topic of using cloud computing for science but was specifically targeted to the audience at hand. This was one of four talks presented to a group of roughly 115 IT staff and researchers at the NASA’s Goddard Space Center.

DevLink 2010

Amazon Web Services for the .NET Developer

We’ve all heard about Amazon’s S3 and EC2 platforms and we know that they are leaders in the cloud computing movement, but how accessible are they to the .NET developer? Come learn about the various SDKs, samples, and tools available to Microsoft Developer targeting the Amazon Cloud as well as tips and tricks for getting the most out of the platform.
Conference Homepage

CodeStock 2010

Amazon Web Services for the .NET Developer

We’ve all heard about Amazon’s S3 and EC2 platforms and we know that they are leaders in the cloud computing movement, but how accessible are they to the .NET developer? Come learn about the various SDKs, samples, and tools available to Microsoft Developer targeting the Amazon Cloud as well as tips and tricks for getting the most out of the platform.
Conference Homepage

Azure: Lessons From the Field

Come learn about Microsoft’s Azure platform (and cloud computing in general) as we look at an application built to assist in the processing and publishing of large-scale scientific data. We will discuss architecture choices, benchmarking results, issues faced as well as the workarounds implemented. While your application may not be dealing with 35TB of numbers, this session will give you insight into the process of developing for the cloud, as well as tips and tricks to help you avoid some common pitfalls.
Conference Homepage  -  Session Video  -  Session Slides

Cloud Futures 2010 - Microsoft Research

Panel on Cloud Applications – New Experiences and Expectations

We’re rushing towards pervasive, always-connected lives and augmented reality at breakneck speed, and the technology landscape is changing so fast we seldom take stock of how different our lives are – and how dependent we are on technology. Cloud computing is in its early days but holds the promise of powering the next step in the progression of human to computer interaction through the introduction of new applications and new interaction models. In this panel we’ll take a provocative look at some of the ways cloud application are changing our lives today and what the future of client plus cloud applications might hold.
Workshop Homepage  -  Session Video

Data and the Cloud: A Call for Improved Formats and Consistency in Data Services Supporting Scientific Research

A variety of cloud computing platforms are emerging and there exist increasing calls for research to be performed utilizing these platforms. While the computational paradigms are improving and the platforms are, in fact, becoming increasingly viable for such research, significant issues remain surrounding the usage and movement of data (specifically large data) within these environments. If cloud computing as a paradigm is to deliver on its promise of democratizing large-scale compute by serving as a natural extension of the scientific workstation, significant effort must be applied towards the issues of data locality, presentation, and interaction. This talk assumes a layman’s perspective as work is reviewed illustrating challenges encountered while attempting to move and interact with large-scale data (subsets of the CMIP3 archive) within the cloud as well as from workstations outside of the cloud. Also discussed are issues surrounding the schism that exists between data formats that would be considered “Internet friendly” and those used in a variety of scientific research and how these formats exacerbate the problems surrounding data movement.
Workshop Homepage  -  Session Video

CodeMash 2010

Windows Azure: Lessons from the field

Come learn about Microsoft’s Azure platform (and cloud computing in general) as we look at an application built to assist in the processing and publishing of large-scale scientific data. We will discuss architecture choices, benchmarking results, issues faced as well as the work-arounds implemented. This session will give you insight into the process of developing for the cloud, as well as tips and tricks to help you avoid some common pitfalls.
Conference Homepage  -  Session Slides

Public Sector/Healthcare & Life Sciences Cloud Computing Showcase

Azure for Climate Analysis

A demonstration of how Windows Azure is being used to post-process climate data generated on the largest super computers in the world. We will also demonstrate data visualization tools that consume the post-processed data from Azure as a data service.
Workshop Description  -  Session Slides

Huntsville New Technology Users Group (HUNTUG)

Windows Azure: Lessons from the field (September, 2009 meeting)

Come learn about Microsoft’s Azure platform (and cloud computing in general) as we look at an application built to assist inthe processing and publishing of large-scale scientific data. We will discuss architecture choices, benchmarking results, issues faced as well as the work-arounds implemented. This session will give you insight into the process of developing for the cloud, as well as tips and tricks to help you avoid some common pitfalls.
User Group Homepage  -  Session Slides

CodeStock 2009

Deployment and Packaging SharePoint Solutions using TFS

Have you been using the VS Extensions for SharePoint to create SharePoint packages and found yourself wondering how best to integrate with your source control platform and build system? Consistent packaging of SharePoint solutions can be a challenge and is not for the faint of heart. Come to this session and learn how our team utilizes TFS, Team Build, SandCastle, SharePoint Installer, and STSDev in concert to produce consistent installation packages for our SharePoint/MOSS environment.
Conference Homepage  -  Session Slides