On the 27th April 2022, the Wirebox development team attended the AWS Summit at the ExCeL in London.
Our aims were simple:
- To keep our senior AWS team engaged with the latest news,
- To expand our knowledge of our newer sysadmin staff,
- To keep our solution delivery to the highest standard(s),
- And… to see if the rumour of free coffee was true.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have much time to plan our day in advance, however, the AWS app made navigating our day a breeze. In fact, the app reminded us of how in-touch AWS are.
Overall, we were really impressed with the level of planning and detail put into the event by AWS. With thousands of people all arriving at the same time, the registration hall had the potential to be a horrendous bottleneck, but the queues barely stopped moving.
Armed with mobile phones and power banks, this event’s theme was largely dictated by the growth of machine learning. Our staff each followed their own learning path throughout the day, catching up on breaks to discover that there was indeed free coffee. Lunch presented us with the opportunity to network, and to explore the sponsors’ stalls.
During one particular seminar, AWS explained the power of machine learning within Amazon, and how using automated forecasting to manage depot stock levels in advance, enables Amazon to fulfil same-day deliveries without fail.
Access to this machine learning was available for developers to engage with on the day through the format of DeepRacer, a virtual vehicle race where your vehicle learns through your response reinforcement.
The virtual experience was then transformed to the physical, where a trained Tamagotchi had the honour of controlling a small “toy” bot in a competitive league. After watching these bots race around the track, the sceptic in us wondered how much AWS is using the reinforcement data on DeepRacer as a method for modelling developer’s responses.
Another point of interest was the expanded scope of the AWS Well-Architected Framework to include environmental considerations.
This framework now features six pillars of evaluation to build cloud workloads with best practices in mind. The topic was only a basic summary of the concept, but with the presentation aligned to the introductory level, that was to be expected. However, discussion booths were available amongst the stalls for those wanting a more in-depth discussion.
Overall, it was clear that the same seamless Amazon-depot machine learning and forecasting had been applied, to provide a highly effective experience at AWS Summit.
In summary, the event ran without fault or complaint. Our staff reunited at the end, buzzing with their increased knowledge and understanding. It’s just a shame that London’s public transport system couldn’t deliver us home quite as efficiently.
Should Amazon run the London Underground? Maybe so. We’ll let you decide.