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Judge Temporarily Halts Microsoft’s Work on JEDI Cloud Contract at Amazon’s Request

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Things are starting to heat up in the war over the Pentagon’s JEDI cloud contract. After an injunction request by Amazon, Microsoft’s work on the $10 billion deal has been temporarily suspended.

The development follows complaints from the retail giant that the contract was awarded to Microsoft unfairly. It alleges that Donald Trump showed a clear and public bias against CEO Jeff Bezos, and highlights a report that he told his defense secretary to ‘screw’ AWS.

Last week, Amazon upped the publicity by calling on the president to testify, claiming that he has unique knowledge surrounding how far his influence in the contract extended. The documents surrounding its recent injunction request are closed off, but a public notice was posted with the confirmation of suspension.
Though Amazon has been awarded the injunction, it comes with a catch. It will have to create a security fund of $42 million. Should the court later find that the action is improper, it will have to pay that out to Microsoft in damages.
In response to the announcement, Microsoft said it was disappointed by the delay but that it believes it will ultimately be able to continue its work.
A Defense Department spokesperson said, “the actions taken in this litigation have unnecessarily delayed implementing DoD’s modernization strategy and deprived our warfighters of a set of capabilities they urgently need.”
Meanwhile, some surprised legal experts say it’s unusual to halt work on the contract unless they see some merit in the case. Whatever the outcome, this will have caused quite the upset for Microsoft’s workers, who suddenly find everything in question.

Source Winbuzzer

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Ericsson Teams with Microsoft Azure to Power ‘next-Generation’ Connected Cars

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Ericsson plans to build its Connected Vehicle Cloud on Microsoft’s Connected Vehicle Platform. Though similar in name, the two are distinctly different, Microsoft offering backbone elements like infrastructure, AI, navigation tech, and IoT Edge, while Ericsson provides a branded service.

The Swedish 5G and IoT provider says its Connected Vehicle Cloud connects more than 4 million vehicles across 180 countries worldwide. That’s 10% of the connected vehicle market, now linked with the Azure cloud.

“Together with Ericsson, we intend to simplify the development of connected vehicle services to help car makers focus on their customers’ needs and accelerate the delivery of unique, tailor-made driving experiences,” said Peggy Johnson, executive vice president, business development, Microsoft.

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Integrating the two services will let Ericsson enable global offerings like fleet management and over the air software updates in a cheaper and faster way. This is on top of its current implementation, which Ericsson says offloads the complexity for vehicle manufacturers by providing 24/7 operations and lifecycle management for connected vehicles.

Volvo already has a deal with both Microsoft and Ericsson. It made the deal with Microsoft back in 2017 and signed a 5-year contract with Ericsson more recently. As ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley points out, Volkswagen acquired Volvo’s connected car unit in late 2018 and has its own strategic partnership with Microsoft. As such, integration of the two connected vehicle solutions will provide significant value for their customers.

“Our integrated solutions will help automotive manufacturers accelerate their global connected vehicle solutions and offer a better experience for drivers and passengers,” said Ericsson’s Åsa Tamsons, Senior Vice President and Head of Business Area Technologies & New Businesses. “This is an exciting new offering with great benefits for the automotive industry, leveraging Ericsson and Microsoft’s technology leadership in connectivity and cloud.”

source – Windbuzzer

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Microsoft Details SQL Server 2019 Machine Learning Improvements

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Microsoft has this week expanded on the details for its SQL Server 2019 platform. Specifically, the company has discussed the machine learning tools in the database management system. Furthermore, Microsoft also talks about the benefits provided by Big Data Clusters.

SQL Server 2019 brings support for Machine Learning Services and failover clusters. Microsoft says this boosts reliability and makes model generation more efficient.

In terms of model training, SQL Server now offers partition-based modelling. With this introduction, users can train multiple small models through partitioned data. Previously, users were limited to training whole models.

An ability to train multiple small models means users can have greater granularity by breaking data into individual categories without needing to split data.

Elsewhere in its post, Microsoft talks about improvements made to R and Python support on SQL Server 2019. Both languages are popular amongst SQL users. In terms of Python, the language is integrated with the database engines.

“Integration of Python with the SQL server database engine enables you to perform advanced machine learning tasks close to the data rather than moving it around. Insights generated from the Python runtime can be accessed by production applications using standard SQL Server data access methods.”

SQL Server 2019

Microsoft announced the general availability of SQL Server 2019 at Ignite in November. Big Data clusters are arguably the stand out feature in SQL Server 2019. This is a solution for scaling data virtualization build on the Kuberenetes (K8s) container. Elsewhere in the new release, Microsoft has added always-on to SQL Server.

source- Windbuzzer

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