February 2009

Newsletter #46

Dear AWS Developers,

This month's newsletter includes several announcements that make it easier to develop on top of the AWS platform and manage your AWS-powered applications, such as the AWS Management Console and Web Starter AMIs. You may also be interested in the lower pricing tiers for Amazon CloudFront, our content delivery service. Be sure to check out the new addition to our newsletter, Virtual Events, in which we highlight webinars delivered by AWS, our partners, and our customers.

News & Announcements

To keep you up-to-date, here are the latest news items and announcements from AWS.

Announcing the AWS Management Console
We’re excited to announce the initial beta release of our AWS Management Console, a web-based, point-and-click, graphical user interface that makes it easier to access and manage Amazon EC2—support for other AWS services to be added over time. You do not need to write any code or install any software, the console allows you to manage instances, mount Amazon Elastic Block Store volumes, and list your AMIs without programming directly to an API. Access to the AWS Management Console is provided free of charge at

New Lower Pricing Tiers for Amazon CloudFront
Effective February 1st, AWS has announced new pricing tiers for Amazon CloudFront, our high-performance, pay-as-you-go content delivery service. The new pricing tiers decrease the price of delivering content to as low as $0.05 per gigabyte delivered for high volume users. Find the new pricing tiers on the CloudFront detail page.

Mechanical Turk’s New Tax Reporting Feature
Mechanical Turk has launched a Tax Reporting feature which makes it easy for businesses to track their US tax reporting obligations when outsourcing work to Mechanical Turk’s on-demand, scalable workforce. The Mechanical Turk Tax Report provides Requesters with information required to file the IRS Form 1099-MISC for US-based Workers who they pay more than $600/year. With the new Tax Report, Mechanical Turk automatically collects the required tax reporting information for each US-based Worker.

Developer Resources

Here are a few highlights and new additions to our Developer Resource Center.

Using Amazon S3 with Adobe Flash and Microsoft Silverlight
Do you want to host Flash or Silverlight content in Amazon S3? Martin Steicher shows how to configure an Adobe Flash or Microsoft Silverlight cross-domain policy file so you can take advantage of Amazon S3’s scalable storage.

Building a Product Catalog with Amazon SimpleDB
Amazon SimpleDB is a useful way to store and retrieve metadata. This tutorial walks you through a sample product catalog application built using Ruby on Rails.

New Web Starter AMIs
To make it easier to get started with Amazon EC2, AWS has put together a series of AMIs running common web server platforms. Link to them below or launch them in the new AWS Management Console:

Featured Solutions

Check out what your peers have built with AWS. These solutions include interesting web applications built on top of AWS as well as tools that help you integrate with AWS.

CloudBuddy is a free tool that brings the Cloud near you. It creates an easy-to-use exploration interface for your “Virtual Desktop” on the Cloud. Let your virtual desktop reside on Amazon’s Cloud Infrastructure, while you access, share, upload and download your files and folders.

Hyperic HQ for AWS automatically manages and monitors the software and applications on your EC2 instances, giving you total visibility into the health and well-being of your computing resources. HQ for AWS provides rich visualization capabilities, trend analysis and capacity planning, advanced alerts, built-in and extendable diagnostics, and remote control of system resources, so you can prevent, detect, and solve problems.

Ozmo is a Web-based solution that makes it easy for independent content creators to license the use of their work for commercial purposes. Ozmo facilitates license creation, account management, reporting and uses Amazon Flexible Payment Services to handle all payment transactions between you and your content customers.

AWS On The Road

If you are interested in starting or joining an AWS user group in 2009, learn more. You can see more events and sign up for a private meeting or a formal presentation on the AWS Evangelist Wiki Calendar.

AWS for Life Sciences
February 4, San Diego

Open Group Conference
February 4-5, San Diego

February 6, Los Angeles, CA

IDC Cloud Computing Forum
February 18, San Francisco, CA

February 24, New York, NY
If you would like a discounted ticket to the event, email us at

Mass Technology Leadership Forum
February 25, Boston, MA

AWS Meet-Up – Boston
February 25, Boston, MA

Seattle CloudCamp
February 28, Seattle, WA (@ Amazon Headquarters)

WTIA Cloud Computing Series: Scaling into the Cloud with Amazon Web Services
March 3, Seattle, WA (@ Amazon Headquarters)

AWS in Beijing, China and Tokyo, Japan
Jeff Barr will be traveling to Beijing and Tokyo in April to speak at conferences in both cities. Jeff has set aside time to meet with existing and prospective customers both individual and corporate. If you would like to arrange a meeting, post your information on his Wiki page. If you cannot use the Wiki, send an email with full details to

Virtual Events

Webcast: Miwok Airways Runs Real-Time Pricing and Reservation System in the Cloud
Attend this February 24th webcast to learn how Miwok Airways uses Amazon EC2 and GigaSpaces eXtreme Application Platform (XAP) to deliver a real-time pricing engine and reservation system that scales up and down to save money while meeting unpredictable demand. Sign up for this webcast.

Amazon SimpleDB Developer Webinar
The Amazon SimpleDB team has kicked off a new webinar series, the Developer Brown Bag, so developers can hear from the technical experts behind SimpleDB and engage in live Q&A. To sign up for the next webinar, suggest a topic, or pre-submit a question, send us an email and include your name & AWS account ID. The first Amazon SimpleDB Developer Brown Bag was held on January 20, click here for the archived recording.

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