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Home Fri, 09 Dec 2022 03:31:06 -0800 (30 items)

GitHub Copilot for Business plans unveiled Fri, 09 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

GitHub has unveiled business usage terms for its GitHub Copilot AI-based coding assistant, making the service available to businesses for $19 per month per user. The company also vowed to keep users’ own code safe from retention, storage, or sharing by GitHub.

GitHub Copilot for Business gives organizations license management, organization-wide policy controls, and privacy features along with licenses for organizations, teams, and individual users. GitHub Copilot, introduced in 2021 as a Visual Studio Code editor extension, offers coding suggestions and functions directly from the user’s programming editor or IDE. The AI model behind Copilot is trained on open source code in public repositories.

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Who is invited to your cloud strategy party? Fri, 09 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

We’ve all worked for companies where core IT decisions are made by a few leaders in the organization. Maybe you’re working for a company like this now. In exit interviews, many people cite this as the core reason for leaving—not pay or the working environment. People feel they have little or no say in the overall direction of IT solutions. They are not in the meetings where the core decisions are made about the types of technologies, the configuration of those technologies, the roles, and the plans for integration and deployment. As cloud pros, this would translate to cloud architectures and deployments, devops toolchains and processes, and the overall enterprise data strategy.

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JDK 20: The new features in Java 20 Fri, 09 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Java 20, or Java Development Kit (JDK) 20, the next planned version of standard Java, is now feature complete. The six features officially marked for the release are either in an incubation or in a preview stage. These include scoped values, record patterns, pattern matching for switch statements and expressions, a foreign function and memory API, virtual threads, and structured concurrency.

Java 20 reached an initial rampdown phase on December 8, with developers now looking to fix bugs and possibly add late enhancements, with approvals required. The JDK is due for general availability on March 3, 2021, as part of Oracle’s six-month release cadence for standard Java editions. JDK 20 would follow the September 20 release of JDK 19.

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Intro to Alpine.js: A JavaScript framework for minimalists Thu, 08 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

The innovation in front-end JavaScript frameworks is one of the great techno-cultural phenomena of our time. For over 20 years now, we have witnessed a long tail of evolutionary creativity unfold. Each new idea goes into the communal pot, stirring up improvements in both the process of developing software and the end products that developers build.

One of the frameworks making a name for itself these days is Alpine.js. Alpine is a minimalist framework fashioned, as its name implies, for light handling over rugged terrain. It delivers a lot of power in a lean, easily mastered package. This article will give you a taste of Alpine.js, so you can understand what it delivers and when it might be useful to you.

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How to use BufferedStream and MemoryStream in C# Thu, 08 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

A stream is an abstraction over a sequence of bytes. You can think of it as a continuous buffer that can be read or written to. Streams are often used in conjunction with buffers to help load data into memory more efficiently. The System.IO namespace in .NET has many classes that work with streams, such as FileStream, MemoryStream, FileInfo, and StreamReader/Writer classes.

Basically, streams are classified as either byte streams or character streams, where byte streams deal with data represented as bytes and character streams deal with characters. In .NET, the byte streams include the Stream, FileStream, MemoryStream, and BufferedStream classes. The .NET character streams include TextReader, TextWriter, StreamReader, and StreamWriter.

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Why Python is catching on with business analysts Thu, 08 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

With data more critical than ever to companies’ success, Python is spreading beyond the realm of data professionals and being adopted by business analysts and other less technical users. But what are the opportunities if you’re relatively new to Python and what best practices should you be aware of to ensure your success?

Data professionals are a precious commodity and in many organizations the demands of the business have outgrown the resources and capacity of data teams. At the same time, business analysts are running into the limits of what BI tools can do for them and looking for ways to do more advanced analytics. Python is the key to success here.

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GitHub bolsters NPM access control Wed, 07 Dec 2022 14:25:00 -0800

Looking to improve the safety and security of NPM JavaScript packages, GitHub is adding granular access tokens to enable fine-grained permissions for NPM accounts, and making its NPM code explorer capability free to users.

GitHub on December 6 explained that stolen credentials are a main cause of data breaches. To help NPM maintainers better manage their risk exposure, GitHub is introducing a granular access token type for NPM. The granular access tokens allow NPM package maintainers to restrict which packages and scopes a token has access to, grant access to specific organizations, set token expiration dates, and limit access based on IP address ranges. Users also can select read-only or read and write access. As many as 50 granular access tokens can be created on an NPM account.

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Azure Kubernetes doubles down on WebAssembly Wed, 07 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

It’s interesting to see how cloud-native runtimes are evolving. Although containers make it simple for applications to bring their own runtimes to clouds, and offer effective isolation from other applications, they don’t offer everything we want from a secure application sandbox. Bringing your own userland solves a lot of problems, but it’s a horizontal isolation not vertical. Container applications still get access to host resources.

That’s why WebAssembly (often shortened to Wasm) has become increasingly important. WebAssembly builds on the familiar JavaScript runtime to provide a sandbox for both server-facing and user-facing code. Binaries written in familiar languages, including the memory-safe and type-safe Go and Rust, can run on Wasm in the browser and use WASI (WebAssembly System Interface) as native applications that don’t need a browser host.

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Google's Vertex AI Vision brings no-code to computer vision Wed, 07 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Developing and deploying vision AI applications is complex and expensive. Organizations need data scientists and machine learning engineers to build training and inference pipelines based on unstructured data such as images and videos. With the acute shortage of skilled machine learning engineers, building and integrating intelligent vision AI applications has become expensive for enterprises.

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14 hot language projects riding WebAssembly Wed, 07 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Today’s web applications are nowhere near as fast and responsive as native desktop applications, but what if they could be? That’s the promise of WebAssembly.

WebAssembly is a low-level, assembly-like language with a compact binary format that runs with near-native performance in web browsers. At the same time, WebAssembly provides a portable compilation target for C/C++, C#, Rust, Go, Kotlin, Swift, and other programming languages.

Hailed as a way to both improve web application performance and allow languages other than JavaScript to be used in the development of browser apps, WebAssembly is championed by Google, Mozilla, Apple, and Microsoft, all of which support the technology in their browser engines.

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C++ overtakes Java in language popularity index Tue, 06 Dec 2022 11:58:00 -0800

C++ ranks higher than Java in the Tiobe language popularity index for the first time ever, dating back to 2001. Java slipped to a new low in the latest edition of the index.

The December 2002 Tiobe Programming Community Index has C++, ranked third, surpassing Java, ranked fourth. It is the first time in the history of the index that Java has not ranked in the index’s top three languages.

“Performance is still very important nowadays and C++ is the fastest large system programming language out there,” said Paul Jansen, CEO at software quality services provider Tiobe. But all is not dire for Java, he stressed. “Java has nothing to worry about so far. I am saying this because it also grew in popularity in 2022 (plus-1.70%), but not as much as the top three languages.”

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Complexity is the enemy of cloud security Tue, 06 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

It’s a fact that most enterprises put security teams and tools in a silo. It drives me nuts when I see these bad habits carried over to cloud computing security. I covered this topic three years ago, and for the most part, it’s unchanged.

Many of today’s security breaches are due to human error. A study by Ponemon and IBM indicates that misconfigured cloud servers cause 19% of data breaches. The cost? A half-million dollars per breach. The cause? Most of the time, too many moving parts for security teams to keep secure. They lose track, things are misconfigured, and the breach occurs. Simple.

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10 common PostgreSQL mistakes and how to avoid them Tue, 06 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

A lot can go wrong with a PostgreSQL installation. Worse, many problems may lurk undetected as the issue builds over a period of time, then suddenly strike with a major impact that brings it to the forefront of everyone’s attention. Whether it’s a glaring drop in performance, or a dramatic rise in resource consumption and billing costs, it’s important to identify such problems as early as possible—or, better yet, avoid them by configuring your implementation to suit the desired workload.

Drawing on Percona’s experience helping countless PostgreSQL shops over the years, we’ve compiled a list of the most common mistakes. Even if you think you’ve configured your PostgreSQL installation the right way, you may still find this list useful in validating your setup.

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AWS is changing Mon, 05 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

After what struck me as a relatively dry spell of product announcements in 2021, AWS spent re:Invent 2022 launching a host of new services. AWS Chief Evangelist Jeff Barr, with help from some AWS developer advocates, summarized the most impactful announcements because “there’s simply too much great stuff for the team to cover,” but then they proceeded to spend more than 2,700 words highlighting their favorite announcements, which seemed to include… everything. Basically, they handed out participation trophies to every AWS service team. Not particularly helpful.

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What are headless architectures and composable systems? Mon, 05 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

What happens when you want the guts of a system—data models, business logic, and machine learning capabilities—without the baggage of being boxed into the platform’s standard user experiences or simplified workflows?

APIs and widgets provide flexibility to extend a platform, which may suffice if you have a few extensions or simple integrations. But what if business requirements force you to bolt on many workflow customizations, complex real-time integrations, and significant design customizations?

The added code may become complex to support, and you might think it’s better to customize a solution from scratch. But developing an ERP, CRM, CMS, e-commerce, search, or other complex system from scratch is daunting and expensive.

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5 things developers love about their work, and 5 things they don't Mon, 05 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Most software developers will recognize the scenario that John Macpherson, lead developer at Scottish web design company Media Surgery, describes as one of the true highs of his job: that feeling "when you test the part you have been working on for days or hours—and it works! You feel like you are an unstoppable superpower that can do anything. A real feeling of euphoria." They'll also recognize the flipside: "When you have been working for days and hours and it doesn't work. You feel worthless and question why you are even employed at all. You feel a fraud. Either euphoria or imposter syndrome. It's a strange old job, but enjoyable—for the most part."

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AWS re:Invent 2022 roundup: Data management, AI, compute take center stage Fri, 02 Dec 2022 12:03:00 -0800

As businesses grapple with growing volumes of data collected and generated by a myriad of cloud-based applications, Amazon Web Services (AWS) unveiled a wide range of new applications and product enhancements this week at its annual re:Invent conference that are geared to optimize data analytics and governance, and bolster the computing infrastructure to do so.

Over the last few days, the company launched new services and features across its storage, compute, analytics, machine learning, databases, and security services, and made its first foray into supply chain management.

Here is a roundup of the major announcements, with links to articles containing more details about the updates.

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Kotlin 1.8.0 beta introduces experimental functions Fri, 02 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Kotlin 1.8.0, an upgrade to the JetBrains-developed, statically typed language for multiplatform mobile, web, and native development, is available in a beta release. The new version introduces experimental functions for the JVM.

The standard library in Kotlin 1.8.0 adds new experimental functions for java.nio.file.path that can recursively copy or delete directory content. Experimental functionality also has been added to TimeMarks, allowing elapseNow to read from multiple TimeMarks simultaneously. Opt-in is required for both sets of new functionality. Kotlin 1.8.0 also stabilizes extension functions for java.util.Optional.

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Cloud computing gets back to basics Fri, 02 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

There seems to be a clear trend in the world of cloud computing to return to IT fundamentals—the core problems that IT was set up to solve, such as data management, security, operations, governance, and development. All these things have been practiced for many decades and should be practiced now.

The issue is not that IT is ignoring the fundamentals as they build and deploy major business systems in the cloud. But sometimes people get distracted by shiny new technologies, or more often, older technology made to look shiny and new.

Yes, hyped technologies are valuable. New, innovative trends such as artificial intelligence, serverless, and containers are having a positive impact on business. I’m talking about focusing on the basics of technology and getting the foundation of everything right. I know it’s a tired analogy, but it’s much the same as building any structure. You can’t improve the building unless the foundation is solid. If you don’t, it will be harder to fix in the future.

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What is DevSecOps? Securing devops pipelines Fri, 02 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Software runs our businesses today. It powers operations, transactions, communications—just about every facet of the digital organization. It follows that ensuring the security of applications and operating systems is a major priority for development and security teams. This is where DevSecOps plays a key role.

Development, security, and operations

DevSecOps is short for development, security, and operations. An extension of the devops model for software development, it involves applying security measures throughout the software development life cycle (SDLC). DevSecOps calls for everyone involved in the development process to be aware of the need for security. As a model, DevSecOps encompasses a set of practices to increase collaboration between the security, development, and operations teams, with the goal of making software more secure.

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Informatica data science framework connects with Amazon SageMaker Thu, 01 Dec 2022 12:00:00 -0800

Informatica has launched a cloud-based development and data science framework, called INFACore, that promises to simplify the process of composing data pipelines for building and deploying machine learning models in Amazon SageMaker Studio.

Powered by Informatica’s Intelligent Data Management Cloud, INFACore is described as an intelligent headless data management platform for developers, data scientists, and data engineers. Simplifying the development of complex data pipelines, INFACore can turn thousands of lines of code into a single function that can be deployed into applications using a native UI supported on Amazon SageMaker Studio, the company said.

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AWS updates its machine learning service SageMaker Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:11:00 -0800

Amazon Web Services on Wednesday added new features to its managed machine learning service Amazon SageMaker, designed to improve governance attributes within the service and adding new capabilities to its notebooks.

Notebooks in context of Amazon SageMaker are compute instances that run the Jupyter Notebook application.

Governance updates to improve granular access, improve workflow

AWS said the new features will allow enterprises to scale governance across their ML model lifecycle. As the number of machine learning models increases, it can get challenging for enterprises to manage the task of setting privilege access controls and establishing governance processes to document model information, such as input data sets, training environment information, model-use description, and risk rating.

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How to use EF Core query types in ASP.NET Core 7 Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Entity Framework Core (EF Core for short) is a popular ORM (object-relational mapper) from Microsoft that allow you to perform CRUD operations (create, read, update, and delete) without having to know how the data is persisted in the underlying database.

When working with ORMs, we often leverage models that are mapped to database tables. However, what if we have a model that doesn’t mimic a database table? How can we map non-entity types and populate objects of such a model in our applications? We can accomplish this with query types.

Initially introduced in EF Core 2.1, query types are non-entity types (classes) that can map to tables or views in the database without an identity column specified, meaning tables and views that lack a key. EF Core query types make it simpler to query views and model types that don’t require identity columns. However, because query types don’t have an identity column defined, you cannot insert, update, or delete data using them. You can use them only to retrieve the data.

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Intro to Mitosis: The universal reactive transformer Thu, 01 Dec 2022 03:00:00 -0800

Mitosis.js is a compiler tool that consumes a universal component syntax and outputs framework-specific code. That means you can write application functionality once and generate it to React, Svelte, or Angular, among others. What distinguishes Mitosis from other compile-time frameworks is its "write once, run anywhere" approach to compilation. Mitosis is an impressive engineering feat, and it has applications anywhere you need to abstract front-end frameworks into pluggable components. 

The hidden benefit of Mitosis is its revelation of the common aspects and unity in front-end JavaScript frameworks. This is a new model that could yield unexpected insights and new directions for future JavaScript development.

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Angular 16 to improve server-side rendering Wed, 30 Nov 2022 15:00:00 -0800

Now that Angular 15 has arrived, the developers of the Google-created, TypeScript-based web framework are eyeing improvements to server-side rendering and runtime performance for a planned Angular 16 release.

Tentatively due in May 2023, Angular 16 would explore hydration and server-side rendering usability improvements, with a first step being non-destructive hydration. This technique would allow reuse of the server-side DOM, and rather than re-rendering it, would only attach event listeners and create data structures needed by the Angular runtime.

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AWS simplifies data management, analytics with new services Wed, 30 Nov 2022 11:38:00 -0800

Simplifying data management and analytics for enterprises is a big theme at this year's AWS re:Invent conference, as Amazon announces new services and features targeted at easing extract, transform, load (ETL) processes and providing support for cataloging and searching data across organizations.

AWS has released two new capabilities—Amazon Aurora zero-ETL integration with Amazon Redshift and Amazon Redshift integration for Apache Spark—that it claims will make the ETL process obsolete. 

Enterprises, typically, use ETL to integrate date from multiple sources into a single consistent data store to be loaded into a data warehouse for analysis.

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AWS' Inspector offers vulnerability management for Lambda serverless functions Wed, 30 Nov 2022 10:31:00 -0800
AWS announces new cybersecurity features in Amazon Inspector and Amazon Macie at AWS Re:Invent 2022 in Las Vegas.

Amazon Omics aims to optimize biological data analysis at scale Wed, 30 Nov 2022 06:49:00 -0800

At its annual re:Invent conference, Amazon Web Services on Tuesday launched a new service, dubbed Amazon Omics, designed to help bioinformaticians, researchers and scientists store and analyze genomic and other biological data types to accelerate scientific advances for precision medicine.

Omics typically refers to fields of study in biology that end with the suffix "omics," such as genomics, transcriptomics (the study of RNA in a cell), proteomics (the study of proteomes, or sets of proteins) and metabolomics (the study of molecules within cells). Omics typically involve large-scale studies with big data sets.  

The new service, according to the company, can be used by scientists to not only create a huge data store but also import large raw data files such as genome sequences or other data files used in precision medicine—a medical field that uses genome and protein data to optimize treatment for diseases.

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AWS adds AI features to Textract, Transcribe and Kendra Wed, 30 Nov 2022 03:38:00 -0800

Amazon Web Services (AWS) on Tuesday added new artificial intelligence (AI) features to some of its services including Textract, Transcribe, Kendra, CodeWhisperer, and HealthLake.

The new updates, according to the company, are expected to enhance AWS’ portfolio of AI services and lay at the top of its three-layer machine learning stack, which includes machine learning hardware and software libraries, and Amazon SageMaker—a fully managed ML development environment.

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AWS Lambda kickstarts Java functions Wed, 30 Nov 2022 03:00:00 -0800

AWS has unveiled AWS Lambda SnapStart for Java, a performance optimization intended to make it easier to build responsive, scalable Java applications using AWS Lambda, the serverless, event-driven compute service in the Amazon cloud.

Introduced November 28, AWS Lambda SnapStart for Java improves startup times by initializing a function’s code ahead of time, taking a snapshot of the initialized execution environment, and caching it. When the function is invoked and scales up, SnapStart resumes new execution environments from the cached snapshot instead of having to initialize them from scratch, thus improving startup latency. AWS said.

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