AWS Public Sector Blog

Category: Education

woman loads a robot for genetic studies

A new key to unlocking drug discovery

Be it aspirin for headache, or statin for cholesterol, or amoxicillin as an antibiotic, there are small molecules that we refer to as drugs that can offer therapeutic remedy. Given the range of possible molecule to protein combinations, finding the right small molecule that is able to bind strongly to a certain target site and inhibit its function is a time-intensive and challenging feat. Enter VirtualFlow, a new open-source software that performs screens, essentially matchmaking between molecules and proteins. Harvard Medical School researchers developed the VirtualFlow platform that tests compounds through computer simulations. Using AWS and an AWS Cloud Credit for Research grant, the researchers demonstrated that VirtualFlow is able to run on the cloud.

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reInvent 2020 Teresa Carlson

What not to miss and how to make the most of re:Invent 2020 for the public sector

AWS re:Invent is back for 2020, and for the first time it’s all virtual and free. AWS re:Invent has become the world’s premier cloud learning event, and this year, we’ll feature sessions focused on how public sector organizations are using the cloud to improve the lives of constituents, patients, customers, and more. The event, kicking off on November 30 and lasting three weeks through December 18, will feature keynotes, leadership sessions, lightning talks, and core sessions tailored for the public sector. To help you make the most of re:Invent 2020, we created the AWS re:Invent Public Sector Virtual Attendee Guide, and the latest episode of The Brief.

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person working on laptop elearning with sleeping dog

Tips and tricks to gamify your class

Do you favor that points-earning credit card? Or stick with the same airline to rack up miles? These are examples of gamification in action. While the term is relatively new, gamification has been around as long as people have tried to make boring activities interesting. Humans have a natural desire to compete, be social, and gain rewards. Elearningindustry.com found that 67 percent of students feel gamified courses are more motivating than traditional ones. And with educators shifting to virtual or blended classrooms worldwide, it’s worth making the effort to create a gamified classroom. Here are four tips to mastering gamification in your classroom.

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University of York; Photo by Joel Barwick via Unsplash

Scaling to zero: Serverless is the way of the future, says University of York

Since universities typically face reliable bursts of traffic, such as on admissions day, they are not often concerned with the ability to scale infinitely—a key reason for going serverless. By doing so with AWS, the University of York now has the ability to scale down to zero, which helps the university better manage applications, reduce costs, and increase agility.

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Photo by Hunter Harritt on Unsplash

Modern data engineering in higher ed: Doing DataOps atop a data lake on AWS

Modern data engineering covers several key components of building a modern data lake. Most databases and data warehouses, to an extent, do not lend themselves well to a DevOps model. DataOps grew out of frustrations trying to build a scalable, reusable data pipeline in an automated fashion. DataOps was founded on applying DevOps principles on top of data lakes to help build automated solutions in a more agile manner. With DataOps, users apply principles of data processing on the data lake to curate and collect the transformed data for downstream processing. One reason that DevOps was hard on databases was because testing was hard to automate on such systems. At California State University Chancellors Office (CSUCO), we took a different approach by residing most of our logic with a programming framework that allows us to build a testable platform. Learn how to apply DataOps in ten steps.

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The COVID-19 infodemic: How Novetta uses machine learning to analyze unproven narratives on social media

The COVID-19 pandemic is driving a parallel “infodemic”: the rapid spread of competing and often harmful narratives about the virus. Social media plays a central role in this infodemic, serving as a forum for the spread and evolution of theories and beliefs with origins in broadcast, print, online news, blogs, and other digital arenas. As the COVID-19 infodemic grew, Novetta used AWS to create Rapid Narrative Analysis (RNA), a solution that achieves accuracy by using human expertise at critical stages of analysis while using machine learning (ML) models to rapidly diagnose the severity of the spread of key narratives at a speed needed to take effective action.

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woman with headphones working at laptop in her kitchen

Simpson College and eThink Education: Promoting institutional success through Moodle

As the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the globe in the initial months of 2020, colleges and universities saw their regular learning plans upended. In many instances, in only a week, higher education institutions reconfigured their pedagogical infrastructure for hundreds or thousands of students with widely varying requirements and learning environments. Given the circumstances and the tight timeframe, it was natural for many schools to rely on their existing learning management systems (LMS) in order to transition to fully online learning. Learn how Simpson College went several steps further, leveraging its Moodle LMS not only to provide its courses but also to fuel success for students and the institution, and set up a new way of operating beyond the pandemic.      

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CloudBank

Simplifying access to cloud resources for researchers: CloudBank

To better support the growing use of cloud computing resources with increasing data- and compute-intensive research and education workloads, the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) announced the Cloud Access solicitation in September 2018. The NSF, through its competitive merit review process, selected CloudBank. Researchers that use CloudBank gain access to advanced hardware resources such as CPUs, GPUs, FPGAs, ASICs, and quantum processing units (QPUs). In addition, CloudBank offers proposal assistance, facilitated cloud access and account management, monitoring and resource usage optimization, and eliminates university overhead/indirect costs, and provides curated training materials, classroom, and help desk support.

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One on One reach

Meeting Caribbean learners’ needs with secure, resilient platform built on AWS

As a result of COVID-19, the Jamaican Ministry of Education, Youth and Information (MOEY) selected One on One as the country’s official virtual school to expand online learning across the country. One on One Educational Services (One on One), a Jamaica-based, an e-learning solutions provider operating across the Caribbean, meets learners’ needs with their secure, resilient learning management platform built on AWS. The platform helped 44,025 students complete their school curriculum, despite the pandemic’s classroom disruption. One on One for Classroom® reached a peak of 12,000 students in attendance on a single day and 235,520 students in attendance throughout the entire period.

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Service Workbench on AWS

Announcing Service Workbench on AWS: A fast and simple solution to create a collaborative research environment

Today, Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced Service Workbench on AWS, a web portal for researchers to deploy domain-specific data and tools on secure IT environments in minutes not months. Customers can accelerate research while promoting repeatability, multi-site collaboration, and cost transparency in the research process. Tailored for researchers, Service Workbench helps quickly and securely stand up research environments for their work, allowing them to focus on the research not the technology.

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