FEED Issue 23

6 NEWSFEED Updates & Upgrades



AWS is partnering with telecos Verizon, Vodafone, South Korea’s SK Telecom and Japan’s KDDI to deliver a service to allow developers to create applications with single-digit millisecond latencies. Many 5G applications, such as mobile gaming, AR/VR, autonomous cars and the Internet of Things require almost real-time functionality. Traditional architecture is

incapable of ultra-low latency, because it takes too long to collect and process data. Edge computing helps reduce this time by bringing core network functions closer to the point of collection and is one of the characteristics of 5G. AWS Wavelength offers computer and storage capabilities at the edge of partner telecommunications’ 5G infrastructure,

meaning latency-sensitive elements of an application don’t need to be sent to a data centre. This significantly reduces the amount of time data spends travelling around a network. Developers can use the same APIs and tools, with non-latency sensitive elements of an application processed at one of Amazon’s 22 regions around the world.


Microsoft and Warner Bros have collaborated to successfully store and retrieve the 1978 Superman movie on a piece of quartz glass that is roughly the size of a drinks coaster. It was the first proof of concept for Project Silica, a Microsoft Azure initiative that develops long-lasting storage technologies for the cloud, reducing the provider’s long-term storage costs and environmental footprint. Using infrared lasers to encode the data into voxels (the 3D equivalent of pixels), the data is stored within the quartz glass and machine- learning algorithms can decode the patterns to read the data back.

material also doesn’t require the energy-intensive cooling required to protect the data stored today. “If Project Silica’s storage solution proves to be as cost- effective and as scaleable as it could be – and we all recognise it’s still early days – this is something we’d love to see adopted by other studios and our peers and other industries,” says Vicky Colf, the chief technology officer at Warner Bros. The technology is still in development, but Mark Russinovich, Azure’s chief technology officer, assures: “We’re now in a phase where we’re working on refinement and experimentation, rather than asking ‘Can we do it?’”

Compared to hard disks, which wear out after three to five years, and magnetic tape, which lasts up to seven years, quartz glass storage could potentially last for centuries. And, unlike other

storage technologies, you only need to write the data onto it once. As the glass doesn’t need to be stored at a constant temperature or in a moisture- free environment, the

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