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Microsoft unveils Apache® Spark™ optimization for Azure, new AI, IoT & machine learning tools for developers



  • New tools to help increase developer productivity and simplify app development for intelligent cloud and edge, across any device, platform or data source

Today at Connect(); 2017, Microsoft Corp.’s (@microsoft) annual event for professional developers, Executive Vice President Scott Guthrie announced new Microsoft data platform technologies and cross-platform developer tools.

Guthrie outlined the company’s vision for what’s next for developers across a broad range of Microsoft and open source technologies, and how Microsoft is helping them get more done across any app or platform.

He also touched on key application scenarios and ways developers can use built-in artificial intelligence (AI)to support continuous innovation and continuous deployment of today’s intelligent applications.

“With today’s intelligent cloud, emerging technologies like AI have the potential to change every facet of how we interact with the world,” said Guthrie. “Developers are in the forefront of shaping that potential. Today we’re announcing new tools and services that help developers build applications and services for the AI-driven future, using the platforms, languages, and collaboration tools they already know and love.”

Any dev, any app, any data, any platform

Microsoft is continuing its commitment to delivering open technologies and contributing to and partnering with the open source community. New tools and partnerships are designed to help developers build intelligent, enterprise-ready and cloud-scale apps — regardless of their platform, and to give them the peace of mind with the built-in security, performance, compliance, support and SLAs available in Azure.

Azure Databricks Preview

  • Designed in collaboration with the founders of Apache® Spark™, Azure Databricks is a fast, easy and collaborative Apache® Spark™-based analytics platform that delivers one-click set up, streamlined workflows, and an interactive workspace.
  • Native integration with Azure SQL Data Warehouse, Azure Storage, Azure Cosmos DB, Azure Active Directory and Power BI, simplifies the creation of modern data warehouses that enable organizations to provide self-service analytics over all data with enterprise-grade performance and governance.

Cassandra API preview for Azure Cosmos DB

  • Expands on the multi-model capabilities of Azure Cosmos DB to offer Cassandra as-a-service over turnkey global distribution, multiple consistency levels and industry-leading SLAs.

GitHub Roadmap for Git Virtual File Systems (GVFS)

  • GitHub will announce GVSF adoption and roadmap for GVSF integration making GVSF the open source industry standard for enterprise scale Git Repositories.

Microsoft Joins MariaDB Foundation

  • Microsoft joins MariaDB foundation as platinum member and announces upcoming preview of Azure Database for MariaDB for a fully managed MariaDB service in the cloud.

Helping developers get more done

Microsoft is releasing tools designed to help developers, developer teams, data scientists and business decision makers, collaborate and work together more efficiently for application development, deployment and management. New tools and feature improvements help to streamline essential tasks, so developers can focus more on getting apps to market across multiple platforms, and for any scenario — whether cloud, data or AI.

Visual Studio App Center GA

  • New cloud service for developers to ship higher quality applications more frequently. Objective-C, Swift, Android Java, Xamarin and React Native developers can use App Center to increase productivity and accelerate application lifecycle, freeing them to spend more time on new features and better user experiences.

Visual Studio Live Share

  • Unique new capability for developers to collaborate in a seamless and secure way with full project context. Developers can share projects with teammates, or other developers, to edit and debug the same code in their personalized editor or IDE.

Azure DevOps Projects

  • Lets developers configure a full DevOps pipeline and connect to Azure Services in less than 5 minutes for faster app development and deployment.With just a few clicks in the Azure portal developers can setup Git repositories, wire up completely automated build & release pipelines without any prior knowledge of how to do so.

Transforming business through analytics and AI

Advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning are placing the seemingly impossible within reach. New tools and APIs from Microsoft are designed to help developers create apps that harness analytics in the cloud and data on the network’s edge, empowering business with new capabilities.

Azure IoT Edge

  • Azure IoT Edge preview availability, enabling artificial intelligence, advanced analytics and machine learning at the Internet of Things (IoT) edge.

Visual Studio Tools for AI

  • Developers and data scientists can develop AI models with all the productivity of Visual Studio, on any framework and language. Updates to .NET make it easier for .NET developers to consume AI models from their applications.

Azure SQL Database Machine Learning services preview

  • Support for R models inside SQL Databasemakes it seamless for data scientists to develop and train models in Azure Machine Learning and deploy those models directly to Azure SQL Database to create predictions at blazing-fast speeds.

For the next two days, Microsoft is streaming more than 36 live, engineering-led training sessions that are designed to give developers hands-on experience with the tools and technologies featured throughout the keynote presentations.