The Microsoft Azure for Research project facilitates and accelerates scholarly and scientific research by enabling researchers to use the power of Microsoft Azure to perform big data computations in the cloud. Microsoft today posted a video on how cloud computing is changing the way research is done. It enables great collaboration and scalability which was not available in the past due to the limitations of traditional computing platforms. Cloud computing has changed the face of research by bringing almost limitless computational power and scalability to data-intensive research. Researchers across disciplines throughout the world are using cloud computing to process and share enormous datasets—quickly and inexpensively. Find out how easy it is for scientists to quickly share not only their findings but also their data and the entire process by which they generated their results. Read more about the Microsoft Azure for Research program, visit http://www.azure4research.com ...

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Gartner has named Microsoft as a Leader in its 2014 Cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Magic Quadrant report. Gartner has also named Microsoft as a Leader in the Enterprise Application Platform as a Service (aPaaS) market in its 2014 Enterprise aPaaS Magic Quadrant. It is worth noting that Microsoft is the only player who are leaders in both aPaaS and IaaS market. Scott Guthrie commented the following on Gartner’s report, We have long maintained that customers need choice and flexibility to navigate this mobile-first, cloud-first world and that Microsoft is uniquely equipped to deliver on that by enabling customers to use public, hybrid or private clouds for maximum flexibility and business benefit. For example, they can instantly provision Virtual Machines, apps and services within Microsoft-managed datacenters around the world. Or, they can develop apps using the languages and frameworks they already use without giving a second thought to the ...

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Microsoft wants to make finding environmental data as simple as clicking on a map. To make this a reality Microsoft has introduced FetchClimate, a tool that makes locating environmental information easy. By drawing a box around a geographic area you’re and selecting the environmental information wanted, you can view the data on Bing Maps within seconds. FetchClimate calculates data uncertainty, so you know how reliable the information is, and the tool allows you to specify precisely the size of the area and the period of time for your query. FetchClimate runs in the cloud, on Microsoft Azure, meaning there is no physical limit on how much information can be added. You can not only look at historical climate data but also peer into the future, as Microsoft has included forecast data from the latest climate simulation experiments. For example, you can see what the predicted temperature or precipitation in your area will be in 2050. The Computational ...

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Along with the announcements about big data and insights, Microsoft today released the preview of a powerful new Azure service: Microsoft Azure Automation. With Azure Automation, Microoft has combined the scalability, reliability, and availability of the Azure platform with the management capabilities of System Center. Azure Automation looks and functions similarly online in Azure as SMA does on-prem in the Windows Azure Pack – but it has been built specifically for cloud-based app/workload management. This means that you can automate the management of your public cloud resources using PowerShell, without an on-prem connection at any point in the process. And because Azure Automation operates as a service, there’s no installation, configuration, or maintenance of the service necessary to get (and stay) up and running. Azure Automation allows for powerful integration, automation, and orchestration that has until now been nearly impossible to do at scale: Integrate: Build new and import existing Windows ...

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Microsoft today announced that the European Union’s data protection authorities have found that Microsoft’s enterprise cloud contracts meet the high standards of EU privacy law. This enables enterprise customers to use Microsoft services to move data freely through cloud from Europe to the rest of the world. This approval applies to Microsoft’s enterprise cloud services – in particular, Microsoft Azure, Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Windows Intune. The EU’s 28 data protection authorities acted through their “Article 29 Working Party” to provide this approval via a joint letter. Importantly, Microsoft is the first – and so far the only – company to receive this approval. By acknowledging that Microsoft’s contractual commitments meet the requirements of the EU’s “model clauses,” Europe’s privacy regulators have said, in effect, that personal data stored in Microsoft’s enterprise cloud is subject to Europe’s rigorous privacy standards no matter where that data is located. This ...

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As we reported yesterday, Microsoft has officially announced that they are rebranding Windows Azure to Microsoft Azure. Microsoft did this re-branding to highlight the fact that Microsoft Azure supports broadest set of operating systems, languages, and services of any public cloud not just Windows. Today we are announcing that Windows Azure will be renamed to Microsoft Azure, beginning April 3, 2014. This change reflects Microsoft’s strategy and focus on Azure as the public cloud platform for customers as well as for our own services Office 365, Dynamics CRM, Bing, OneDrive, Skype, and Xbox Live. Our commitment to deliver an enterprise-grade cloud platform for the world’s applications is greater than ever. Today we support one of  the broadest set of operating systems, languages, and services of any public cloud—from Windows, SQL and .NET to Python, Ruby, Node.js, Java, Hadoop, Linux, and Oracle. In today’s mobile-first, cloud-first, data-powered world, customers want a ...

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