Amazon Web Services (AWS)

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As a Certified AWS Consulting Partner we are big fans of AWS.  From cost optimizations to whiz-bang features we have drunk the AWS cloud Kool-Aid.  Learn more about the latest and greatest from AWS by reading these articles. Enjoy!

  • complex AWS diagram

    Top 10 things IT departments miss when setting up AWS

    Getting started in AWS is easy. Anyone can do it!  That said, when IT departments set up their own AWS cloud environments, they almost always miss something.

  • Amazon Cognito

    How is authentication and identity managed in AWS applications?

    Authentication and authorization is a critical aspect of building modern applications. With the proliferation of mobile devices and the increasing demand for seamless user experiences, developers need robust and scalable solutions to manage user identities and access controls.

  • AWS logo

    AWS Partner Proof of Concept Funding

    If you are interesting in moving to the AWS Cloud but need to "try before you buy", you are in luck.

  • AWS Control Tower

    What is AWS Control Tower?

    You are up and running in the AWS cloud. You've done multiple PoCs, and you have a number of workloads using S3, EC2 and multiple RDS databases. So far so good!

  • close up of migration evaluator

    What is AWS Migration Evaluator?

    Migrating to the cloud can be a complex and challenging process for businesses. With the growing popularity of Amazon Web Services (AWS), many organizations are considering or actively planning to move their applications and data to the AWS cloud.

  • AWS machine learning-competency badge

    How to earn an AWS Machine Learning Competency

    Since it's inception, AWS (Amazon Web Services) has been a leading provider of cloud computing services and in recent years has established itself as a top player in machine learning.

  • deep learning graphic - circuit board that looks like a brain

    AWS CodeWhisperer - ML Augmented Development (3 of 3)

    In the previous blog we talked about ChatGPT and went through some examples on how to use it to help develop solutions. Today I'm going to do a similar experiement with AWS CodeWhisperer. 

  • AWS CloudTrail

    What is AWS CloudTrail

    AWS CloudTrail provides a record of all API calls made within an AWS account.

  • taking a picture of a dish

    ReactJS Amplify App Part I - Overview and Auth

    This is a three part post about our experience using AWS Amplify to develop a food logging app for the Metal Toad hackathon. Here in part one we cover the initial project overview/setup and our experience implementing Amplify Auth. Part two will cover Amplify Storage, with part three covering Amplify AppSync and PubSub.

  • 5 Signs You Need Cloud Migration Consulting

    5 Signs You Need AWS Cloud Migration Consulting

    At some point in the last decade, you’ve probably bought a new computer. And at first, it’s great: performance is zippy, but after a few years, things start slowing down. Even though you upgrade your OS things seem wonky.

  • focus on migration hub

    Simplifying Your Cloud Migration Journey using AWS Migration Hub

    Migrating to the cloud has become a common practice for businesses looking to achieve scalability, flexibility, and cost-efficiency in their IT infrastructure.

  • sample quicksight dashboards

    What is Amazon Quicksight?

    If you're looking for a powerful, cloud-based business intelligence service, Amazon QuickSight deserves serious consideration. With this innovative tool, you can easily share insightful data visualizations with your team, no matter where they are.

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    Performance enhancements with Amazon Neptune

    Querying performance enhancements with Neptune versus DynamoDB with OpenSearch.

  • Serverless Best Practices

    Serverless Best Practice Resources

    My last Session for re:Invent was on optimizing Lambda. It is a very fascinating topic with lots of little nobs that can be turned to incrementally improve performance. But this blog isn’t about that. 

  • Image and Natural Language Processing (NLP) using AWS Machine Learning

    Image & Natural Language Processing (NLP) using AWS Machine Learning

    Machine learning has revolutionized the way we think about technology and its capabilities.

  • AWS Banner

    Lambda SnapStart

    AWS re:Invent is in full swing and with it come new services that people have been asking for.

  • Person holding Metal Toad's cloud migration readiness checklist.

    Cloud Readiness Assessment

    If you are being asked to assess whether you company is ready to migrate to the Cloud, you're not alone. As of 2022, 94% of companies use cloud technology in some form or another. Here are few statistics:

  • Amazon S3

    What is Amazon S3?

    Amazon S3 is short for Amazon Simple Storage Service, and it is the storage in the cloud. While it can be used to store anything, it's best to think of as optimized for files (documents, images, etc) that you may need quick, easy access to from the cloud.

  • AWS Insight

    Managed Services for AWS

    One ‘gotcha’ I’ve experienced when discussing cloud ecosystems is that the term ‘managed services’ has drastically different meanings depending on the context. This is unfortunate as it adds extra effort to get to truly valuable conversations around the power of cloud.

  • How to Choose the Right Cloud Provider

    How to choose the right cloud provider

    The promise of cloud technology has spawned tremendous innovation by some of the biggest, most powerful companies in the world.

  • woman with children viewing ipad filtering content

    Top 5 things to know about machine learning content moderation

    If you are in charge of moderating user generated content, whether video, image or text based, you may be wondering how you can take advantage of machine learning without having to completely rearchitecting your platform.

  • Graphic that says "Content Moderation with AWS Rekognition POC."

    Automated Content Moderation with AWS Machine Learning

    Metal Toad was recently announced as a solutions partner in Mux’s newest partner program initiative. Mux is a video platform that enables developers to quickly and easily build out amazing video experiences. 

  • deep learning graphic - circuit board that looks like a brain

    AWS Deep Learning

    If you are in the tech world or in the executive business space, you've probably heard the term "Deep Learning" being thrown around. Within the AWS Machine Learning ecosystem the specific deep learning tools are:

  • Amazon Rekognition labels a woman's face including sentiment analysis

    Amazon Rekognition

    Amazon Rekognition (sometimes AWS Rekognition) is a pre-trained computer vision AWS deep learning algorithm which can pull and index insights from images and videos.

  • Amazon SageMaker

    Amazon SageMaker

    What is Amazon SageMaker? If you are new to the machine learning development world you not know what you need to know about Amazon SageMaker. Here are the top 5 things you should know about it:

  • AWS Machine Learning Certification badge

    Is the AWS Machine Learning Certification worth it?

    How does AWS Machine Learning Certification Compare to the Competition? Machine Learning is hot, and AWS machine learning is at the very top of the list.  When compared to the other major cloud providers on SpyFu (a search keyword research tool), the

  • CEO Joaquin Lippincott at re:Invent 2021

    Big Takeaways from AWS re:Invent 2021

    While normally I consider myself a consistent writer, since this summer it's been difficult for me to muster to will to research and share the newest, most interesting things happening in the technology space.

  • Computer chip with a brain background with text that says "Q4 2021 Hackathon Team Brazuca Identifying Downed Power Lines."

    Q4 2021 Online Hackathon: Identifying Downed Power Lines

    In Februar

  • Blue image with faint computer code that reads, "Hackathon // Winter 2021 Theme: Machine Learning // Dec 15 - 17"

    Announcing The Metal Toad Q4 2021 Online Hackathon: Building Your Own Machine Learning Model

    It's that magical time of the year - our hackathon is back! Twice a year, we set aside the day-to-day and dive into an exciting 48-hour innovation whirlwind of rapid development. It's a chance to play on the leading edge of cloud technology, and we have a lot of fun doing it.

  • Purple image that says "Where is AWS going? 3 trends from AWS re:Invent 2021"

    Where is AWS going? 3 Trends From AWS re:Invent 2021

    I had the privilege of being able to attend AWS re:Invent 2021 in Las Vegas.

  • Purple image with white text that says, "AWS re:Invent Recap day 1."

    AWS re:Invent 2021 Day 1 Recap

    “Unforgettable” is without a shadow of a doubt, the most accurate word for my first day watching

  • AWS Lambda

    What is AWS Lambda?

    AWS Lambda, for those not familiar with it, is an event driven serverless (what is serverless?) platform for compute resources.

  • AWS re:Invent 2021 Guide

    AWS reInvent: what to expect 2021

    As an award-winning AWS Advanced Consulting Partner and AWS managed services provider, we are pumped about the

  • data science analytics for media feature

    Metal Toad Recognized as Key Partner For New AWS Media & Entertainment Initiative

    Metal Toad is proud to be recognized as a key partner for the recently launched AWS for Media & Entertainment initiative. Metal Toad received special recognition for Data Science & Analytics for Media.

  • Digital Rights Management and the Cloud Artwork

    Digital Rights Management and the Cloud

    As the CEO of BuyDRM, Christopher provides key insight and management to staff based around the world, as part of BuyDRM’s mission to deliver the leading DRM service platform available. As part of that role, he works with their growing global customer base to ensure they are deploying best of breed solutions they can base their business on. Christopher continues to build upon their 20 years of experience deploying commercial-grade DRM services and solutions.

  • Media Orchestration + Cloud

    Media Orchestration + Cloud

    With over 23 years in the industry, Art Raymond has been involved in media and advertising for the totality of his career. From the very beginning, Art’s goal was to build the most efficient multi-channel publishing platform anywhere. Through generations of technologies, Art has led Reach Engine by Levels Beyond as CEO for 15 years and became CCO in 2020.

  • Back to the future - of websites

    How to make a website

    22 years ago, I worked at a company called  The company failed in the year 2000, but back in 1999 we were selling websites. The sales pitch was that a website was a key part

  • AWS reInvent

    Top 3 takeaways from AWS re:Invent 2020

    Talk about going big—AWS re:Invent 2020

  • Working on a laptop

    How to Host a Website on AWS in 5 Minutes

    For most casual website owners, it’s often easy to simply use a hosting provider with built in support for their CMS and integrating analytics.  However, for the curious and ambitious, hosting directly on cloud (Amazon Web Services (AWS)) will unleash new oppor

  • AWS NAS insight

    Setup a NAS on AWS

    As part of Metal Toad’s Managed Services Team, I have worked extensively in custom cloud based solutions. There is no doubt Amazon Web Services (AWS) leads the pack in Cloud hosting, but when it comes to a Network Attached Storage (NAS) solution, I have found a shortfall...a fast solution.

  • Bee in flight

    When should you use AWS Lambda?

    Faster than the wing flap of a bee Bees flap their wings ridiculously fast, at around 230 beats per second (fruit flies are 80 times smaller than honeybees but flap their wings only 200 times a second.) Given that there are 1,000 milliseconds in a second, a bee wing flap takes ~4.3 mill

  • Insights from Julie Scott Artwork

    Adaptability, Reinvention, and Media Security

    Our CTO, Tony Rost, sat down with Senior Product Manager, Julie Scott, to talk about her key takeaways from this year’s re:Invent: organizational adaptability, Reinvention, and Media Security.

  • Chaos Engineering & AWS CloudShell Artwork

    Chaos Engineering & AWS CloudShell

    Our CTO, Tony Rost, sat down with engineering manager Nathan Wilkerson to talk about his key takeaways from this year’s re:Invent: Chaos Engineering & AWS CloudShell

  • Data Dashboards with AWS Quicksight

    How to get started with AWS Quicksight

    Our CTO, Tony Rost, sat down with product leader Dave Bellous to talk about his key takeaways from this year’s re:Invent: AWS Quicksight

  • Cloud Consulting

    What are the different types of cloud service providers?

    Back in 2014 when we first launched the Emmys on AWS, the service had been publicly available since 2006. While eight years might not seem that long, it's quite a long time in technology years. By comparison, GCP (Google's Cloud) and Azure (Microsoft's Cloud)

  • AWS re:Invent

    AWS re:Invent announcements 2020

    Things are a little different this year at AWS re:Invent, but one thing remained unchanged: Andy Jassy’s AWS 2020 re:Invent keynote was packed with exciting announcements!

  • 2020 Hackathon group

    Metal Toad’s Remote Work 2020 AWS Hackathon: Outcomes & Innovations

    The dust has settled at the Toads’ biannual hackathon, and what a ride it was!

  • AWS re:Invent

    Top 3 AWS re:Invent 2020 announcements

    Last week AWS wrapped up their latest AWS re:Invent Conference. This year it was a three week online event with multiple tracks, re-broadcasts, and announcements.

  • Team Passive Piglet

    AWS Chime: Lessons learned

    A lot has changed during 2020. One is the number of people working remotely. That’s the Q4 hackathon theme was “Remote Work in 2020”. We wanted to break into teams and see what we could do in just a few days.

  • Santa Party

    Remote Work 2020 Hackathon: Branded Video Chat Software

    What was the challenge/problem your team wanted to solve? Santa Claus was exposed to COVID-19 via contact with an elf that tested positive.  To reduce risk, Santa went into

  • Video Streaming + Cloud Artwork

    Video Streaming + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Joachim Bergman, CEO/COO at 24i. Joachim Bergman has been leading tech innovation for over two decades, with a focus on media and entertainment tech for leading enterprises like Ericsson. Joachim joined Amino back in 2017. When Amino acquired 24i in 2019 Joachim became the CEO and COO of 24i. 

  • Metadata in the Cloud Artwork

    Metadata in the Cloud

    Executive Interview with Rob Tucker, Founder of META. With over 15 years innovating tech solutions in media and entertainment, Rob Tucker leverages his technical expertise and industry insights to help broadcasters and studios maximize the value of their catalogs. He founded META nearly four years ago to provide comprehensive metadata services to leading media companies, and leads all operational, technology, and design aspects of the business.

  • Digital Asset Management + Cloud Artwork

    Digital Asset Management + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Gary Ballabio, Head of Technology Partnerships at Cloudinary. Gary Ballabio has been innovating in the technology space for over two decades. His roles have run the gamut in product and business development leadership. In his current role at Cloudinary, he leads technology partnership initiatives.

  • Happy Hackathon!

    Metal Toad’s 2020 Hackathon: AWS Remote Work Innovations

    It’s hackathon time again at Metal Toad! Twice a year, we set aside the day-to-day and dive into an exciting 48-hour innovation whirlwind of rapid development. It’s a chance to play on the leading edge of cloud technology, and we have a lot of fun doing it.

  • Performance Monitoring + Cloud Artwork

    Performance Monitoring + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Brenton Ough, CEO and Cofounder, Touchstream. Brenton Ough has been innovating in the technology field for over 20 years, with a focus on product development, business management, operations, and strategy. Seven years ago, he co-founded Touchstream to deliver actionable analytics and business intelligence to companies livestreaming on every device and format.  

  • Video Monetization + Cloud Artwork

    Video Monetization + Cloud

    Executive Interview with George Meek, CEO at InPlayer. George Meek has been in the technology field for decades and has focused on media and entertainment for most of his career. He has extensive experience with digital monetization. Today, he is the CEO of InPlayer, the world’s leading pay-per-view and subscription solution for OTT, on-demand, and live digital events.

  • Aws re:Invent 2020 for M&E

    AWS re:Invent Quick Guide for Media & Entertainment

    In a year of radical change, one of the biggest transformations has been the massive shift to online entertainment and engagement—powered by the cloud.

  • Monetization in the Cloud Artwork

    Monetization in the Cloud

    Executive Interview with Srinivasan KA, Co-founder, Amagi. Srinivasan KA has been a leader in the tech industry for over two decades. He began his career as a software engineer and founded a wireless audio company in the late nineties.

  • Digital Watermarking and Security in the Cloud Artwork

    Digital Watermarking & Security in the Cloud

    Executive Interview with Ken Gerstein, VP of Sales at NAGRA. Ken Gerstein has been a sales and business development leader in the media and entertainment field for over 20 years. He thrives on establishing new brands and working on the cutting edge of technology. In his current role at NAGRA, a division of the Kudelski Group, he leads sales and strategic initiatives for the NexGuard forensic watermarking portfolio.

  • AWS re:Invent

    re:Invent 2020: Not your average conference

    I love going to conferences. I love the mix of travel and new ideas.

  • Los Angeles City skyline with palm trees

    Cloud technology in Los Angeles

    Los Angeles' Scope Los Angeles is a massive metropolis.  While only #18 by population - with a mere 18.7 million people - Los Angeles is 3rd in the world in GDP with over a trillion of dollars produced annually.

  • AWS Header Image

    What is AWS Cloud?

    Taken literally AWS is an acronym for Amazon Web Services, but that doesn't really help to clarify what it AWS is.  Summarized, AWS is Amazon's offering for selling computer time in the cloud.

  • Video Content as a Service + Cloud

    Video Content as a Service + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Philippe Brodeur, CEO and Founder of Overcast HQ. Philippe Brodeur got his start in the M&E space as a BBC producer and editor. Since 2007, he has founded and led multiple media technology companies.

  • Linear Television + Cloud Artwork

    Linear Television + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Igor Krol, CEO of Veset. Igor Krol has well over a decade of experience as a high-level executive in the investment banking field. Seven years ago, he joined Veset as COO, and today he serves as CEO. In that role, he focuses on strategy and building toward the long-term success of the company.

  • Metadata + Cloud Artwork

    Metadata + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Shaun McCarthy, General Manager of Meta. Shaun McCarthy has decades of experience as a senior executive in the tech field, with a focus on startups, operations, marketing, and sales. He is an industry expert when it comes to creating value and building relationships with stakeholders.

  • Streaming Video Infrastructure + Cloud

    Streaming Video Infrastructure + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Stefan Lederer, CEO & Founder of Bitmovin. Stefan Lederer is an internationally recognized expert in video and streaming technologies. In 2012, he founded Bitmovin, which provides adaptive streaming infrastructure for the world’s largest OTT online video providers.

  • Unstructured File Data at Scale + Cloud Artwork

    Unstructured File Data at Scale + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Barry Russell, SVP of Business Development & GM of Cloud for Qumulo. Barry Russell has been at the forefront of the cloud since 2008. He led the development of the AWS Marketplace and AWS Service Catalog P&L businesses from day one, taking them to $1.5B in revenue in six years.

  • Data Optimization in the Cloud Artwork

    Data Optimization in the Cloud

    Executive Interview with Jerónimo Macanás Candilejo, CEO & Co-Founder of Jump. Jerónimo is a digital entrepreneur with almost 20 years of experience leading media and entertainment innovation in the US, Europe, and Latin America.

  • Low-Latency Streaming + Cloud

    Low-Latency Streaming + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Per Lindgren, CTO and Co-Founder at Net Insight. Per has been a leader in the digital M&E world for over 20 years. He co-founded Net Insight over 20 years ago, defining new ways to deliver media at the leading edge of ever-changing technology.

  • Artificial Intelligence + Cloud Artwork

    Artificial Intelligence + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Greg Loose, Head of Media & Entertainment at Veritone. Greg is a long-time leader in the technology space, including SaaS cloud strategy, data management, and marketing and business development. In his current role at Veritone, he leads the M&E vertical, where he drives engineering and strategy for award-winning products like Attribute, Digital Media Hub, and aiWARE—the industry’s only AI operating system.

  • Quality Control Solutions + Cloud Artwork

    Quality Control Solutions + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Fereidoon Khosravi, SVP and Chief Business Development Officer at Venera Technologies. Fereidoon has been a leader in the US and international technology sectors for over three decades. In the last 15 years, he has focused on digital media.

  • Agile Media Workflows + Cloud Artwork

    Agile Media Workflows + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Lincoln Spiteri, VP of Engineering at Dalet. Lincoln has been in the telecommunications, media, and software industry for over 20 years. He is currently the VP of Engineering at Dalet where he drives engineering excellence on solutions that help customers manage, curate, orchestrate, deliver and monetize their content.

  • Media & Entertainment Cloud Ecosystem with Ian McPherson

    Media & Entertainment Cloud Ecosystem

    Executive Interview with Ian McPherson, AWS, Head of North American Partnerships and Alliances Media and Entertainment. Ian is a longtime marketing leader in the tech space. In his current role at AWS, he manages relationships with AWS’s ecosystem of ISV partners in the film, broadcast, and publishing worlds—including developing new partnerships, providing technical support for AWS service integration, and promoting cloud-based solutions for media workflows.

  • Media & Entertainment Ecosystem

    The Media & Entertainment Cloud Ecosystem

    For the Media & Entertainment industry, COVID-19 has had an unimaginable impact: Disney saw its profits fall 91% during the first three months of this year; The flat launch of HBO Max caused the WarnerMedia/AT&T stock price to drop 30% over the past 12 months; Peacock has now hit almost 22 million users, though it’s not clear how many of them are paying.

  • AWS Logo header for ISV blog post

    What's an AWS ISV?

    In the world of AWS acronyms abound.  The term ISV gets thrown around a lot but it's relatively easy to unpack.  First, ISV stands for Independent Software Vendor.  What this means is a company who product or service is build in AWS Cloud, but is not an AWS p

  • Media Content Distribution + Cloud

    Media Content Distribution + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Fredrik Andersson, Founder and SVP of Products of Accedo. In his role, Fredrik is helping the world’s leading video service providers engage users across a vast range of connected devices. Accedo leverages the power of the cloud—and AWS services in particular—to create powerful consumer experiences, with a commitment to ongoing tech innovation.

  • Metal Toad office on Rua Funchal in Sao Paulo Brazil

    Metal Toad Brazil

    As we round the bend into Fall (which officially starts September 22), we are reminded of the changing season by things that are familiar to us: getting kids back to school, a welcome cooling of the air, the changing of the leaves (and for some people, most importantly, the return of the Pumpkin

  • Chris Manriquez Headshot

    The Impact of the Cloud on Universities

    An Executive Interview with Chris Manriquez, Vice President for Information Technology/CIO at California State University, Dominguez Hills I’ve been chatting (virtually) with some of the execs I admire—from across a range of industries—to get insights on how they’re using cloud tech

  • Digital Rights Management plus Cloud

    Digital Rights Management (DRM) + Cloud

    Executive Interview with Olga Kornienko, COO and co-founder of EZDRM, a cloud DRM-as-a-Service company. EZDRM’s innovative services provide a full spectrum of video security offerings in a cloud API-driven solution. Since 2001, Olga has driven the growth of EZDRM's international enterprise and cemented its position as a leader in both business and technology.

  • "There is something for everyone in the AWS ecosystem"

    Machine Learning - it's easier than you think!

    10 years ago, a younger me interviewed a brilliant young man named Tony for a position as a programmer at Metal Toad.

  • DJI Park

    Live Stream From Drone To AWS With S3 Backup

    Drones are awesome, and a lot of fun. But what happens if your drone gets lost along with all its footage? Or, what if you want other people around the world to be able to tune in to what the drone sees — in real time — as  it sees it?

  • Media Supply Chain + Cloud

    Media Supply Chain + Cloud

    In this interview, I chat with Erik Åhlin, CEO and co-founder of Vidispine about media supply chains, how M&E companies can leverage the power of the cloud, and what he sees for the future of the industry. 

  • Carmen Editorial

    The Impact of the Cloud on Higher Education

    Carmen Lidz is the Vice Chancellor and Chief Information Officer at Los Angeles Community College District, where she shapes the technology vision and implements strategies, infrastructure, and enterprise systems and services to support the entire...

  • Drone Flying

    Remote live streaming to AWS Media Services from a DJI Spark drone

    I’m Vaughn Hawk, a Cloud Engineer for Metal Toad for over 3 years.

  • cloud downloading into an ipad

    How Cloud became the most important buzzword in business

    Cloud is not the first (and probably not the last) disruptor to business via software.  Over the past 50 years or so there have been four major epochs of software, with Cloud being the latest. SaaS software is dying and the Cloud is coming for all of us.

  • AWS Lambda

    Lambda: javascript vs python

    For this hackathon we created a product, YouToad, using Amplify (S3, React, Lambda) and AWS Elemental MediaConvert

  • Bill Martin Editorial

    Cloud + Live Events

    As CIO at sports and music entertainment giant AEG, Bill Martin drives the convergence of business and technology to deliver innovative success. Bill and I got together to talk about how businesses are actualizing the promise of the...

  • Machine Learning Banner Image

    How to do machine learning in AWS

    After being immersed in hundreds of announcements and innovations and inspiring presentations at AWS re:Invent, the key insight I came away with was this: machine learning has so radically evolved that it will change the future of every industry smart enough take advantage of it.

  • AWS Personalize - AWS reInvent Insights

    AWS Personalize - AWS reInvent Insights

    AWS Personalize, part of Amazon's suite of machine learning services, allows for creating highly curated experiences is a major differentiator for enterprises that seize the possibilities.

  • Bridget Editorial Photo

    Cloud + Healthcare

    Bridget Barnes has spent over 15 years leading strategic information system architecture at Oregon Health Science University (OHSU)—one of the nation’s most prestigious hospitals and a vibrant hub of groundbreaking...

  • cloud in a pill

    The Cloud May Be ITs Antidote for COVID-19

    These are unprecedented times where it's hard to get anyone to pay attention to anything other than the COVID-19 epidemic sweeping the globe.  But what is the answer for IT if we are looking at a prolonged period of distributed work?

  • Jim editorial

    Cloud + Manufacturing

    In this interview, Jim gives his take on the future of cloud, the building blocks of evaluating enterprise tech solutions, and his advice for other execs navigating the ever-changing cloud landscape.

  • Portland at sunset

    The Battle for Cloud Marketshare in Oregon

    Oregon has always been well known for its timber industry.  Indeed at one point in the 1970s fully 12% of the States GDP was produced by timber.  While timber's former dominance is not a surprise, many p

  • What Is Cloud Computing

    What Is Cloud Computing?

    Cloud computing is: the delivery of services, on a pay-as-you go basis. It’s the availability of offsite computer system resources that offers strength and flexibility

  • NYC Banner-Postponed

    AWS Media Symposium—New York 2020 (Postponed)

    Excited about the future of media and entertainment? Join us at the AWS Media Symposium in New York this year (March 11, 2020). We’re excited to be sponsors at what promises to be an illuminating day of ...

  • HPA Tech Retreat Banner

    HPA Tech Retreat 2020

    Exhilarating, overwhelming, and immensely inspiring—the HPA Tech Retreat (February 17–20 in Palm Springs, CA) is one of our favorite events of the year.

  • AWS Media Symposium—Miami 2020 Banner

    AWS Media Symposium—Miami 2020

    We’re excited about the AWS Media Symposium in Miami this year (February 13, 2020). It will be a full day for AWS partners, experts, technologists, and leaders in the M&E industry to learn and connect. 

  • AWS logo

    AWS Partner Requirements Expand Metal Toad's Knowledge

    Early last year, AWS drastically increased the requirements for becoming certified as  a partner in the AWS Partner Network (APN).

  • rubix cube

    ReactJS Amplify App Pt II - Storage

    The banner and food feed have placeholder images that are ready to accept an avatar image. Now on to storing and retrieving an avatar in an s3 bucket using Amplify Storage, and displaying it using Amplify React S3Image!

  • VIP Event Banner

    2019 State of Video+Cloud for Media & Entertainment VIP Luncheon: AWS Elemental

    The cloud is transforming everything, and the Media & Entertainment industry in Los Angeles is feeling this shift acutely.

  • Half opened Laptop in dark

    Building a AWS Headless CMS

    Over the past several years, Metal Toad has launched several successful cloud-first web and mobile applications, often with hardware components. With each release, I'm noticing how product management, UX, and engineering are frequently able to produce the same features of a CMS faster and cheaper than using Drupal, Wordpress, Salesforce, and Adobe.

  • Inside of Machine

    Predictive Maintenance with Machine Learning and IoT

    Maintenance of machinery is vital in all industries.  Not only does maintenance cost time and money, but improper maintenance could lead to inefficient performance or potentially be a safety hazard depending upon the purpose of the machinery.

  • lambda

    What is serverless?

    Recently the term "serverless" has been thrown a lot in reference to provisioned, on demand functions invoked by a cloud provider, as a service. Obviously we're not going to call them ODFIBACPaaS, so most of the web has decided to...

  • cloud boxing

    Saas vs. Cloud

    I talk a lot about the Cloud. And while, "the cloud" is certainly a candidate for buzzword bingo, unlike some other buzzwords, I really do believe this one lives up to the hype.

  • AWS logo

    How to win with the AWS Well Architected Framework

    Over the years, we've perfected our own internal AWS standards regarding product management, scrum management, code quality, peer review, continuous deployments, and others.

  • Cloud computing competition image

    The Cloud War: Battlefront IBC (1 of 4)

    At IBC2019, the biggest international conference for the Media & Entertainment industry, there were some major themes:

  • User holding phone

    The Value of Android, iOS, and React to the Cloud

    As an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner, Metal Toad helps our clients identify their cloud solutions.  However, one question I frequently hear is, “If we are building cloud solutions, then why is there a need for engineers in Android, iOS, and React specialties?”.

  • Man jumping in clouds

    Why the Cloud Movement Is the Future of All Business

    Cloud computing is quickly becoming not just another tech innovation, but a fundamental shift in the way businesses function. Learn the top 6 advantages of moving to cloud and the ONLY 3 ways to accomplish innovation.

  • Devops cycle

    5 Signs You Need Better AWS DevOps

    Imagine this scenario: you want to build a new house, so you hire two people: an architect to design the structure and all the plumbing and wiring and the like, and an interior designer to come up with the various features of the rooms, the lighting, the colors, the decor.

  • whispering

    Your Serverless Function has a Secret

    Your serverless function has a secret... maybe it's a password for a remote API, a private key, or signing certificate. These secrets have to be stored somewhere, and in the old days that usually meant just a plaintext config file on your server.

  • AWS Snowflake

    AWS Snowflake Data Warehousing

    Learn about AWS Snowflake Architecture, data handling and connecting to Snowflake, how to set up a Snowflake DB, and load Data from the pros at Metal Toad.

  • Iot Data Pipeline

    Building an Expandable IoT Data Pipeline - Part 1

    Background and problem description In late 2016 we were approached with an opportunity to build a data pipeline for one of our large clients.

  • AWS WAF & Shield

    Origin Protection with AWS WAF & Shield

    Amazon has been steadily improving their CloudFront CDN offering with WAF (Web Application Firewall) capabilities. This is a great feature, however it's ineffective if origin servers can be attacked directly, bypassing CloudFront. With a little extra work, access to the origin can be restricted. The solution is to add a secret header value at the edge, and configure the load balancer to block requests that are missing this secret. This is necessary because CloudFront distributions are not associated with security groups, nor are fixed IPs available (unlike higher-priced competitors like Kona Site Shield).

  • Women Engineer Kicking Ass

    Using Serverless Config to Deploy an AWS CloudWatch Dashboard

    My team’s most recent project has been really interesting - it’s a JavaScript project that includes using the Serverless Framework to deploy a variety of AWS Lambda Functions (e.g. uploading to S3 buckets and making requests to the API that we built)...

  • clouds and security

    Best Practices For a Secure Cloud Part 1

    Whether you’re running on premise datacenter, using a private or public IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) hosting platform, security is extremely important. We’ve all seen the horror stories in the news when companies experience data security breaches.

  • Capistrano Logo

    Using Capistrano with Dynamic Virtual Environments

    The Problem At Metal Toad we use Capistrano to facilitate deploying projects. It allows us to support different environments, pulling and pushing databases and files, for all sorts of products.

  • AWS Logo

    NFS Performance on AWS

    Last year, I wrote a blog about the performance of various NFS Solutions in AWS. Earlier this year, Amazon announced its own NFS Solution called Elastic File System, “EFS”.

  • AWS CloudFront Logo

    Amazon CloudFront with Drupal 8

    Since I wrote my first review of CloudFront, Amazon has added support for three essential features...

  • AWS logo

    AWS Cross-Account Roles and Consolidated Billing

    Amazon Web Service recently introduced support for cross-account roles. What this now means, is that you can use one IAM account to access multiple AWS accounts.

  • AWS CloudFormation

    Cloud Architecture: AWS CloudFormation

    In my previous blog series, Evolution of a Custom Cloud, I went over how our base design for a custom cloud has improved and how we setup our current VPC network architecture.

  • AWS logo

    Capistrano Deploy to dynamic AWS EC2

    At Metal Toad we use Capistrano to deploy our projects to their respective servers. Normally this is done with a configuration file for each stage (Dev, Staging, QA, and Production) that contains a list of servers. Below is an example of one of those files.

  • Cool cloud photo

    Evolution of the Custom Cloud: Part 1 "Architecting the Cloud"

    Last year Metal Toad launched its Custom Cloud Service. Since then, our Custom Cloud Architecture has evolved to handle the increased complexity and security requirements of our clients cloud applications.

  • cool tech graphics

    AWS NAS Test Part 2

    Shortly after I wrote AWS NAS Test I was contacted by Zadara Storage. They had some concerns about the data I reported from my test.

  • cool tech graphics

    The 2013 Emmys Leverage AWS

    When preparing for a big event, it is our job to make sure the general public sees exactly what is expected, and with the help of Amazon Web Service (AWS) we did! All planning comes with a few standard issue assessments/steps: Identify need, identify options, and begin to build!

  • cool tech graphics

    Bucket policy for friendly file exchange on Amazon S3

    We sometimes need to exchange huge files with our customers and partners (too big to fit within the typical storage limits of Basecamp, or the free tier on Google Drive, Dropbox, etc). There are now many user-friendly client apps for Amazon S3. I like Cyberduck. Combined with AWS's flexible policy system, setting up a transfer bucket is a snap.

  • cool tech graphics

    Using Amazon Cloudfront with Drupal

    We like to use our own site to experiment with different technologies. CDN's are nothing new, and Metal Toad has projects running on competing systems including Akamai and Level 3. Still, I think Amazon Cloudfront is an interesting offering and I wanted to give it a spin. Here's my review of the service after setting it up with Drupal:

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