May 14, 2021

Driving Federal IT Transformation

U.S Air Force
Dell
Dell TechnologiesDell Technolo...
2 min
Dell Technologies and the USAF: partners in IT modernization.

Dell Technologies and the U.S. Air Force have a longstanding partnership. On several programs of record, Dell Technologies supports mission-oriented areas, including providing data-centric applications for platforms that the Air Force leverages in testing and operations. For example, certain high-performance jet fighters rely on Dell Technologies software that helps provide critical information about aircraft performance to the service and the aircraft manufacturer. After a test flight, data modules gathered from the aircraft’s sensors are downloaded, processed and analyzed to provide critical insights.

The Air Force has also made a concerted effort to drive technology to the edge so that warfighters can gain value from their data where it lives. Dell Technologies is enabling dynamic decision-making at the edge, where collection, management, analysis, and the distribution of data is critical. Dell Technologies’ software factories are supporting some of the largest Air Force programs, like Kessel Run and Kobayashi Maru.

Kobayashi Maru is a cloud-based program designed to modernize the way the Air Force (now the U.S. Space Force) interacts with its allies. By the time Kobayashi Maru was a program, the service had a year or two of experience with the highly successful Kessel Run. According to the Air Force, this continuous user-centered approach enabled warfighters to quickly evaluate software improvements, provide direct feedback to Kessel Run developers, and rapidly iterate the software to provide maximum value and impact. Kobayashi Maru operates under the same principle: the existing software procurement process is too slow to satisfy requirements, so leverage best practices and partner with industry (in this case, Dell Technologies) to get new systems into the field as quickly as possible.

The U.S. Air Force is committed to IT modernization, as exemplified by its ability to embrace change and transformation in how critical systems are procured and deployed. And Dell Technologies is committed to supporting the Air Force in its endeavors, so the service will always be ready for what’s next.

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Jun 21, 2021

How AWS helps NASCAR delight its fans

AWS
NASCAR
3 min
Customer obsession and working backwards from the customer is a mantra of Amazon Web Services (AWS), epitomizing its partnership with NASCAR

AWS needs no introduction to readers of Technology Magazine but we rarely get an opportunity to look closely at how it serves the sports sector. All major sports draw in a huge supporter base that they want to nurture and support. Technology is the key to every major sports organization and enabling this is the driving force for AWS, says Matt Hurst, Head of Global Sports Marketing and Communications for AWS. “In sports, as in every industry, machine learning and artificial intelligence and high performance computing are helping to usher in the next wave of technical sports innovation.”

AWS approaches sports in three principal areas. “The first is unlocking data’s potential: leagues and teams hold vast amounts of data and AWS is enabling them to analyze that data at scale and make better, more informed decisions. The second is engaging and delighting fans: with AWS fans are getting deeper insights through visually compelling on-screen graphics and interactive Second Screen experiences. And the third is rapidly improving sports performance: leagues and teams are using AWS to innovate like never before.”

Among the many global brands that partner with AWS are Germany's Bundesliga, the NFL, F1, the NHL, the PGA Tour and of course NASCAR. NASCAR has worked with AWS on its digital transformation (migrating it's 18 petabyte video archive containing 70 years of historical footage to AWS), to optimize its cloud data center operations and to enable its global brand expansion. AWS Media Services powers the NASCAR Drive mobile app, delivering broadcast-quality content for more than 80 million fans worldwide. The platform, including AWS Elemental MediaLive and AWS Elemental MediaStore, helps NASCAR provide fans instant access to the driver’s view of the race track during races, augmented by audio and a continually updated leaderboard. “And NASCAR will use our flagship machine learning service Amazon SageMaker to train deep learning models to enhance metadata and video analytics.”

Using AWS artificial intelligence and machine learning, NASCAR aims to deliver even more fan experiences that they'd never have anticipated. “Just imagine a race between Dale Earnhardt Sr and Dale Jr at Talladega! There's a bright future, and we're looking forward to working with NASCAR, helping them tap into AWS technology to continue to digitally transform, innovate and create even more fan experiences.”

Just as AWS is helping NASCAR bridge that historical gap between the legacy architecture and new technology, more customers are using AWS for machine learning than any other provider. As an example, who would have thought five years ago that NFL would be using  ML to predict and prevent injury to its players? Since 2017, the league has utilized AWS as its official cloud and ML provider for the NFL Next Gen Stats (NGS) platform, which provides real-time location data, speed, and acceleration for every player during every play on every inch of the field. “One of the most potentially revolutionary components of the NFL-AWS partnership,” says Matt Hurst, “is the development of the 'Digital Athlete,' a computer simulation model that can be used to replicate infinite scenarios within the game environment—including variations by position and environmental factors, emphasizing the league's commitment to player safety.”

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