Microsoft's Big Cloud Play

Today Microsoft rolled out a set of very impressive technical innovations based on the Azure Cloud.  The most notable to non-developers is a new feature for Microsoft Powerpoint in which it can provide real time translations of a powerpoint presenter's speech.  By scanning a simple QR code, users can follow along on a mobile device which will provide real time text translation of what the presenter is saying.  Other notable innovations included:

  • Azure Functions - Execute code in the cloud without a server and now locally on a personal computer. 
  • Azure Cosmos DB - It’s the industry’s first globally distributed, multi-model database service that delivers horizontal scale with guaranteed uptime, throughput, consistency and millisecond latency at the 99th percentile.
  • Visual Studio 2017 for Mac - now generally available, enables developers to work seamlessly across Windows and Mac environments with full support for mobile, web and cloud workloads and previews of Docker tools, Azure Functions and Xamarin IoT support.
  • Microsoft has the industry’s broadest offering of cognitive services with 29 of them now, and with unique customization options. New services include Bing Custom Search, Custom Vision Service, Custom Decision Service and Video Indexer.

While many of these new announcements are sure to be ignored by many non-technical people, they are a huge step forward for cutting edge companies that rely on true advances in computing.  As we sat there and watched these wonders unveiled we could already see the gears grinding in many of the attendees heads.