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April 30, 2015

Microsoft Build 2015: 4 first day take-aways

IOS and Android apps to run on Windows 10; MS steps into the Exabyte scale data lake.

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Microsoft has been busy at the annual Build conference in San Francisco, with details regarding updates to its SQL Database, competition for the Oculus Rift and features for Windows 10.

1. Azure Data Lake
Microsoft is stepping into the data lake business with its Azure Data Lake, which is a Hadoop File System.

The hyperscale repository for Big Data analytic workloads in the cloud, will be compatible with HDFS and will enable offerings such as Azure HDInsight, Revolution-R and Hadoop distributions such as Hortonworks and Cloudera to connect to it.

The data lake would be able to run analysis using Exabyte’s of structured and unstructured data.

2. SQL Database
Microsoft has also brought to the market updates for its SQL Database as the company makes it more flexible.

The preview of Azure SQL Database elastic database technology is designed to aid developers that are building SaaS applications with unpredictable resource demands.

The elastic database will work by creating a pool of resources which can be shared across all users, which should help to lower costs.

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Transparent Data Encryption has been added which is aimed at protecting against malicious activity by performing real-time encryption and decryption of the database, as well as associated backups and transaction log files.

The final addition to the SQL database is the Service Tier Advisor which provides customers with upgrading assistance.

3. Windows 10 features
With Microsoft pushing for people to adopt Windows 10, the company has been detailing a number of features to entice customers.

A set of software development kits has been added to help developers bring code for the Web, .NET, Win32, Android and iOS to Windows 10.

Additionally, a few Azure data services have been added for intelligent applications such as; Visual Studio and .NET tools and runtimes for Windows, Mac and Linux , as well as APIs that enable developers to build apps with Office 365.

The targeting of developers continues with an Office Graph API, add-in capabilities for the iPad and Outlook and unified API’s.

4. HoloLens

The company is calling it the world’s first and only, fully untethered holographic computer. The headset which displays 3D holograms in augmented reality, will for example, help customers to visualise building designs in context of landscape.

The device is being pushed as a more business focused competitor to Facebook’s Oculus Rift, which has been in the market for a number of years.

Use cases have been highlighted in areas such as the field of medical training for medical students, who are learning procedures without having to pick up a scalpel.

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