TWIL: January 8, 2023

Happy New Year! In this first TWIL of the year, I’m highlighting the awesome Energy and Space Geek Outs from the .NET Rocks folks, a set of articles on Microsoft Purview, Azure Databricks, Power BI and Generative AI, and some interesting Microsoft news on quantum computing and CO2 capture. Have fun!


The Azure Podcast

Episode 450: Twitter Live Spaces Discussion
In an Azure Podcast team first, we all got together on Twitter Live Spaces, with a handful of live listeners to see how well this medium works. 

.NET Rocks

Episode 1825: Energy Geek Out 2022
End of the year, time for a geek out on energy! Richard chats with Carl about the usual modern power generation sources, including solar and wind, and a breakthrough in the drilling method for geothermal energy. The conversation dives into small modular reactors (SMR) and the commitment in Canada to build the first SMR! Molten Salt Reactors have made some progress in 2022, but the extensive conversation is about fusion power. From the NIF announcement to Commonwealth Fusion and others – there’s lots to talk about!

Episode 1826: Space Geek Out 2022
Ready for some space? Richard talks to Carl about all the incredible space-related stories in 2022. Starting with a record launch year – more flights to orbit than any year in history! Then the conversation digs into some cool missions around the solar system, including the Double Asteroid Redirection Test – we’re learning how to protect our planet against asteroid impacts! Then on to space stations (there’s more than one!) and, of course, the Moon – so many missions to the Moon! The biggest is Artemis, but there are plenty of others. And then there’s the James Webb Space Telescope… what a fantastic year in space!

Episode 1827: Alice and Bob Learn App Security with Tanya Janca
How do we learn about application security? Carl and Richard talk to Tanya Janca about her book ‘Alice and Bob Learn Application Security.’ Tanya talks about bringing positive conversations around security, enabling people to get work done while being secure. Software developers are now targets for the black hats because they often have super-user accounts and aren’t following security practices as closely as others. Building secure software means developing it in a secure context – it takes practice, but is the best way to succeed in making secure software!


Episode 866: Testing mobile devices with robots with Mobot’s Eden Full Goh
Eden Full Goh is the CEO and Founder of Mobot, a venture-backed company that automates testing of mobile apps using robotics technology. Previously, Eden built products that spanned the energy, healthcare and government sectors at Palantir Technologies and Butterfly Network. Eden studied Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science at Princeton University.

Cloud Architecture

AZ-CheatSheet: Become an expert in Azure Landing Zones
Azure landing zones are the output of a multisubscription Azure environment that accounts for scale, security governance, networking, and identity. Azure landing zones enable application migration, modernization, and innovation at enterprise-scale in Azure. These zones consider all platform resources that are required to support the customer’s application portfolio and don’t differentiate between infrastructure as a service or platform as a service.

Microsoft Purview

Manage data sources in Microsoft Purview
In this article, you learn how to register new data sources, manage collections of data sources, and view sources in Microsoft Purview.

Scans and ingestion in Microsoft Purview
This article provides an overview of the Scanning and Ingestion features in Microsoft Purview. These features connect your Microsoft Purview account to your sources to populate the data map and data catalog so you can begin exploring and managing your data through Microsoft Purview.

Create resource set pattern rules
At-scale data processing systems typically store a single table in storage as multiple files. This concept is represented in Microsoft Purview by using resource sets. A resource set is a single object in the data catalog that represents a large number of assets in storage. When scanning a storage account, Microsoft Purview uses a set of defined patterns to determine if a group of assets is a resource set. In some cases, Microsoft Purview’s resource set grouping may not accurately reflect your data estate. Resource set pattern rules allow you to customize or override how Microsoft Purview detects which assets are grouped as resource sets and how they’re displayed within the catalog.

Azure Databricks

Azure Databricks: Instance Pools
Azure Databricks pools reduce cluster start and auto-scaling times by maintaining a set of idle, ready-to-use instances. When a cluster is attached to a pool, cluster nodes are created using the pool’s idle instances. If the pool has no idle instances, the pool expands by allocating a new instance from the instance provider in order to accommodate the cluster’s request. When a cluster releases an instance, it returns to the pool and is free for another cluster to use. Only clusters attached to a pool can use that pool’s idle instances.

Best practices: pools
Clusters provide the computation resources and configurations that run your notebooks and jobs. Clusters run on instances provisioned by your cloud provider on demand. The Azure Databricks platform provides an efficient and cost-effective way to manage your analytics infrastructure. This article shows how to address the following challenges when creating new clusters or scaling up existing clusters.

Power BI

Plan to migrate .rdl reports to Power BI
This article targets Power BI Report Server and SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) report authors and Power BI administrators. It provides you with guidance to help you migrate your Report Definition Language (.rdl) reports to Power BI.

Artificial Intelligence

2022: The rise of Generative AI Enhanced Software Engineers
As 2022 draws to a close, it is time to look back and reflect on what it brought to us. AI in general, Generative AI in particular, is one of the things that took the world by storm, showing us what the future of workforces will look like. Specifically, on Generative AI, we have seen remarkable progress in products at research (ChatGPT), preview (Microsoft Designer) and commercial (GitHub Autopilot) stages.

Interesting Stuff

Microsoft reports a Majorana development in its quest to build quantum computers
Microsoft says its researchers have found evidence of an exotic phenomenon that’s key to its plans to build general-purpose quantum computers. The phenomenon, known as a Majorana zero mode, is expected to smooth the path for topological quantum computing — the technological approach that’s favored by Microsoft’s Azure Quantum program.

Microsoft-backed start-up Heirloom uses limestone to capture CO2
Just about every industry is working to reduce carbon emissions, but reduction won’t be enough. To prevent the worst effects of global warming, carbon that has already been emitted needs to be removed from the atmosphere, which is why there is a new and fast-growing industry around carbon capture.

Quiet People in Meetings Are Incredible
I used to be loud in meetings. These quiet people changed my mind. Now I try to sit quietly in most meetings and not say a word. I’m a long way from mastering this skill but it has already taught me so much.

Have an awesome week!

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