Archive For The “Services” Category

How Complex Systems Fail

How Complex Systems Fail

This is a simple little article that’s worth reading. I don’t agree with every point made but all 18 are interesting and every one of them leads to some introspection on how it compares with the situations I have come across over the years. It’s nice and concise with unusually good reading time to value…

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AWS Graviton2

AWS Graviton2

In November of last year, AWS announced the first ARM-based AWS instance type (AWS Designed Processor: Graviton). For me this was a very big deal because I’ve been talking about ARM based servers for more than a decade, believing that massive client volumes fund the R&D stream that feeds most server-side innovation. In our industry,…

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2019 SIGMOD Systems Award

2019 SIGMOD Systems Award

At SIGMOD 2019 in Amsterdam last month it was announced that the Amazon Aurora service has been awarded the 2019 SIGMOD Systems Award. From the awards committee: The SIGMOD Systems Award is awarded to an individual or set of individuals to recognize the development of a software or hardware system whose technical contribqutions have had…

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2019 ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Award

2019 ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Award

Back in late 2008 and early 2009, I had a few projects underway. One was investigating the impact of high temperatures on the longevity and fault rates in servers. We know what it costs to keep a data center cool, but what I wanted to know is what it would cost if we didn’t keep…

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AWS Inferentia Machine Learning Processor

AWS Inferentia Machine Learning Processor

On Monday night I described AWS Graviton , the general-purpose AWS-developed server processor with 64-bit Arm that powers the EC2 A1 instance family. The five members of the A1 instance family target scale-out workloads such as web servers, caching fleets, and development workloads. This is the first general-purpose processor that has been designed, developed, and…

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AWS Designed Processor: Graviton

AWS Designed Processor: Graviton

This is an exciting day and one I’ve been looking forward to for more than a decade. As many of you know, the gestation time for a new innovation at AWS can incredibly short.  Some of our most important services went from good ideas to successful, heavily-used services in only months.  But, custom silicon is…

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Choose Technology Suppliers Carefully

Choose Technology Suppliers Carefully

Many years ago, Amazon chose to use Oracle database products to run the business. At the time it was a perfectly rational decision and, back then, many customers made the same choice and some took a different path. I’ve worked on both DB2 and SQL Server over the years so I know well the arguments on…

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How Many Data Centers Needed World-Wide

How Many Data Centers Needed World-Wide

Last week Fortune asked Mark Hurd, Oracle co-CEO, how Oracle was going to compete in cloud computing when their capital spending came in at $1.7B whereas the aggregate spending of the three cloud players was $31B. Essentially the question was, if you assume the big three are spending roughly equally, how can $1.7B compete with…

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Airline Overbooking isn’t Evil

Airline Overbooking isn’t Evil

Airline overbooking isn’t evil. In fact, if done properly, it’s good for airlines, good for customers, and good for the environment. Sold seats are clearly good for airlines and their shareholders. High utilization is good for customers because it reduces seat costs for airlines which normally operate at single digit profit margins. In the consumer…

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At Scale, Rare Events aren’t Rare

At Scale, Rare Events aren’t Rare

I’m a connoisseur of failure. I love reading about engineering failures of all forms and, unsurprisingly, I’m particularly interested in data center faults. It’s not that I delight in engineering failures. My interest is driven by believing that the more faults we all understand, the more likely we can engineer systems that don’t suffer from…

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AWS re:Invent 2016

AWS re:Invent 2016

Last week we held the 5th annual AWS re:Invent conference. This conference is my favorite opportunity to get into more detail with customers and partners and to learn more about some of the incredible innovations AWS customers are producing. The first year, I was impressed by the conference scale. Back in 2012 it still felt like…

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A Decade of Innovation

A Decade of Innovation

March 14, 2006 was the beginning of a new era in computing. That was the day that Amazon Web Services released the Simple Storage Service (S3). Technically, Simple Queuing Services was released earlier but it was the release of S3 that really lit the fire under cloud computing. I remember that day well. At the…

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Volkswagen Emissions Fiasco

Volkswagen Emissions Fiasco

I’m an avid reader of engineering disasters since one of my primary roles in my day job is to avoid them. And, away from work, we are taking a small boat around the world with only two people on board and that too needs to be done with care where an engineering or operational mistake…

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VPC NAT gateways : transactional uniqueness at scale

VPC NAT gateways : transactional uniqueness at scale

This is a guest blog post on Perspectives from Colm MacCarthaigh, a senior engineer on the Amazon Web Services team that designed and built the new VPC Network Address Translation Gateway service that just went live yesterday. Over the last 25 years, Network Address Translation (NAT) has become almost ubiquitous in networks of any size. The…

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Greenpeace, Renewable Energy, and Data Centers

Greenpeace, Renewable Energy, and Data Centers

Greenpeace has focused on many issues of great import over the years. I like whales, don’t like shark finning, and it’s hard to be a huge fan of testing nuclear weapons on South Pacific islands. Much good work has been done and continues to be done. Over the past three to five years, Greenpeace has…

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The Return to the Cloud

The Return to the Cloud

Zynga is often in the news because gaming is hot and Zynga has been, and continues to be, a successful gaming company. What’s different here is the story isn’t about gaming nor is it really about Zynga itself. The San Francisco gaming house with a public valuation of $2.5B was an earlier adopter of cloud…

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