March 2010 - Amazon SimpleDB Introduces Consistent Reads

Newsletter #59

Dear AWS Community,

Check out our latest feature announcements, including consistent reads from Amazon SimpleDB and Extra Large High Memory Instances from Amazon EC2. For developers, we have a number of new resources to highlight this month, including sample code for Amazon Mechanical Turk and an ASP.NET sample application for Amazon S3 and SimpleDB. Also, check out our event calendar and webinar schedule, March will be a busy month and we hope you will connect with us at one of these events.

News & Announcements

Amazon SimpleDB Introduces Consistent Reads and Conditional Puts & Deletes
Amazon SimpleDB now enables Consistent Reads and Conditional Puts & Deletes. Consistent Reads provide the ability to specify the consistency characteristic you require for each read call within your application, with an eventually consistent read optimized for lowest latency and highest throughput and a consistent read that provides “read my last write” capability. Conditional Puts & Deletes are mechanisms for inserting, updating, or deleting one or more attributes of an item with full transactional semantics using a single PutAttributes or Delete Attributes API call. By offering these new features, we aim to facilitate additional use cases of Amazon SimpleDB.

Save up to 35% on your Amazon EC2 Costs with Extra Large High Memory Instances
High Memory Extra Large instances are a great new option for customers who are currently leveraging Standard Extra Large instances. High Memory Extra Large instances offer similar processing power and more memory than Standard Extra Large instances at prices that are 25-35% lower.

Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances With Windows Now Available
We are excited to announce the immediate availability of Amazon EC2 Reserved Instances with Windows, which work like Reserved Instances with Linux/UNIX. You simply pay a low, upfront fee for each Reserved Instances with Windows you want to reserve and in turn receive a significant discount on the hourly price during a 1 or 3 year period.

AWS Import/Export Now Supports SATA Drives, 4TB Devices
AWS Import/Export now supports internal SATA hard drives for data loads in the Amazon S3 Standard and EU (Ireland) Regions. Additionally, you can now send portable storage devices with capacities up to 4TB, reducing the number of devices required for large data loads.

Call For AWS Customer Presenters
Have you had success with AWS and want to share your story with others? We are organizing a series of events around the world and are looking for customer speakers. We are interested in hearing from all customers, regardless of industry or use case. Each event will highlight at least 3-4 AWS customers with a 10-15 minute talk each. Tell us about your use of AWS.

Developer Resources

Here are a few new developer resources to help you get started on AWS.

Petboard: An ASP.NET Code Sample Using Amazon S3 and Amazon SimpleDB
The Petboard sample application shows you how to use AWS in an ASP.NET application. The web application is a catalog of pets and information about each pet, including a profile photo, likes, and dislikes. Petboard shows how to organize structured data using Amazon SimpleDB, serve images from Amazon S3, and implement ASP.NET Membership using Amazon SimpleDB.

Exploring Automated Adjudication Workflow in Amazon Mechanical Turk
This java-based code sample creates an “Adjudication Engine” which allows a Mechanical Turk Requester to use plurality to automatically approve or reject work. The code creates HITs with multiple assignments. Once Workers complete the assignments, the code sample compares their answers. If answers don’t match a new HIT is created to break the tie.

New Production AMIs Available From IBM
IBM InfoSphere DataStage/QualityStage Production AMI allows you to quickly integrate data in high volumes across multiple data sources and target applications. IBM WebSphere eXtreme Scale Production AMI processes massive volumes of transactions with extreme efficiency and linear scalability.

AWS Solution Providers

Check out the latest announcements from the AWS Solution Provider community.

Sorenson Media Announces API /Developer Site for Video Developers
Sorenson Media, a provider of video encoding and compression technology, introduces its public developer’s site and API. Benefits to using Sorenson 360 APIs include simplicity, breadth of video services (encoding, video management), and fast time to deployment, all through a single software platform running atop AWS. To learn more, please visit

Double-Take Software Announces Disaster Recovery Solution on AWS
Double-Take Cloud uses Double-Take Software’s system state replication engine, allowing customers to recover their data, applications, and operating systems, and resume a workload from bare metal. Customers can run their recovered workloads in Amazon EC2 while at the same time restoring the original workload at their production site. To learn more visit

Featured Case Study: Hitachi Systems
Hitachi Systems & Services has turned to Amazon S3 to address their growing storage demands for their new “Mobile Broadcast Solution.” The solution delivers customized mobile TV content to local users when entering the Shibuya commercial area of Tokyo. Hitachi Systems immediately realized the benefits of cost and scale by using cloud based storage as opposed to deploying storage arrays within their own data centers. To learn more, read the case study.

AWS On The Road

We hope you can join AWS, our customers, and partners at the following events.

GDC: Social & Online Games Summit
March 9-10, San Francisco, CA

Visit AWS and RightScale at the Social & Online Games Summit at GDC.

Techcelerate Workshop
March 10, Daresbury, UK
Jeff Barr will make his third visit to the Daresbury Innovation Centre and will discuss the newest features of AWS in the morning. There will be time for 1-on-1 sessions in the afternoon.

March 15-18, Santa Clara, CA
Visit the AWS booth or attend a presentation given by AWS evangelist Jinesh Varia:

  • Building Your First Amazon App, March 15, 1:00-2:45pm
  • Design Patterns for Cloud Computing Applications, March 16, 2:45-3:45pm
  • New Pricing Models: How Will They Impact ROI?, March 16, 4:00-5:00pm

    Digitaria Cloud Computing Mixer
    March 17, Los Angeles, CA
    Join AWS and Digitaria, a full service digital agency, for this cloud computing reception and mingle with online marketing thought leaders in media, entertainment and sports.

    AWS Developer Bootcamp
    March 24, London, UK
    ThoughtWorks will be offering a one-day AWS Developer Bootcamp for software developers and engineers.

    AWS User Group – London
    March 25, London, UK

    Synopsys User Group

    March 31, San Jose, CA
    Jeff Barr will present an introduction to AWS and will discuss how AWS is being put to use in the EDA (Electronic Design Automation) industry.

    Rochester AWS User Group
    April 5, Rochester NY
    Jeff Barr will talk about the latest AWS developments including Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) and the Virtual Private Cloud (VPC).

    Cloud for the Enterprise Event: San Francisco
    April 13, San Francisco, CA

    Join us for this half-day event, and learn how AWS offers enterprises a scalable, cost-effective, flexible, and secure cloud computing platform.

    AWS Start-Up Project Event: Silicon Valley
    April 14, Sunnyvale, CA
    Learn how entrepreneurs, technologists, and business leaders are using AWS to power their start-ups in the cloud.

    Cloud for the Enterprise Event: London
    April 22, London, UK
    Join us for this half-day event, and learn how AWS offers enterprises a scalable, cost-effective, flexible, and secure cloud computing platform.

    Virtual Events

    Learn more about AWS by registering for an upcoming webinar or virtual event.

    Learn how to manage Grid Processing for Financial Institutions
    March 17, 8:00am PST

    Register for this webinar to learn how to effectively manage large grid processing jobs on AWS with RightScale’s cloud management platform. In this webinar RightScale will do a live demonstration of how a hedge fund would run a complete scalable grid application environment that is automated, resilient to errors, and auditable.

    Cloud Computing for Developers
    March 18, Amsterdam, Ehningen, Hursley, Stockholm, Vienna
    March 24, Zurich
    Sign up for this free virtual event on cloud computing for developers and ISVs who are looking to jump start their skills on building Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications. With live demonstrations and online chats, you will discover how a combination of IBM software running on Amazon Web Services allows you to design and distribute innovative applications in the cloud.

    Scaling Out Java Apps on Amazon EC2 using Tomcat, Spring, Hibernate, and Ehcache
    March 23, 11:00am PST

    In this webinar you’ll learn how to take Enterprise Java applications and scale them out on Amazon EC2. Using an open source example, Jeff Barr from AWS and Ari Zilka from Terracotta will show you how to achieve optimal performance on Amazon EC2 as you scale. We’ll demonstrate how to leverage EC2’s elasticity to quickly and easily grow your app without bottlenecking on the database.

    Moving Mission-Critical Applications into the Cloud
    March 24, 9:00am PST
    Learn more about federated cloud management for both on-premise and off-premise cloud topologies. Join Jeff Barr, Senior Web Services Evangelist for Amazon Web Services and Jim Kaskade, Chief of Cloud SIOS Technology for an insightful discussion on moving mission-critical applications into the cloud.

    Launch Your Game on the Cloud in Less Than An Hour!
    March 25, 11:00am PST
    Attend this webinar to learn how to shorten your time to market and launch your game on AWS using RightScale’s cloud management platform. Learn how several major gaming publishers, such as Playfish and Zynga, have used RightScale and AWS to power their highly-elastic social game applications. We will provide insight into launching your first game, avoiding common scaling problems, and automating your sys admin tasks.

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