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The door has closed on 2018 and the holiday stupor is about over, time to leverage some of the exciting information delivered at AWS re:Invent!

There were massive exhibit halls, more sessions than you can count, and seas of people hurrying to meetings, break-outs, keynotes, recharging with coffee and searching for the meaning of life! It was hectic, chaotic and packed with information and a deluge of news and updates. To say AWS is moving fast is an understatement. The release and modification to products is at a pace almost unseen by this industry. In this article I’m summarizing my top 5 key releases from the 2018 re:Invent based on their relevance and potential impact – – but since there were so many, I’m compelled to provide an honorable mention as well! Drumroll please…

The Top 5

1) Transit Gateway – Answering the needs of enterprises with multiple VPCs and data networking policies that require point-to-point VPNs – – the Transit Gateway simplifies the management by allowing the creation and management of a single connection into the Transit Gateway. One word of caution with any “easy button” networking service – – know how it works in order to ensure it’s the right solution and that issues be effectively diagnosed and corrected.

2) Well Architected Tool – Another powerful tool on the utility belt, this no-cost service compares existing workloads and compares to the AWS Well-Architected Framework. More visibility into your dynamic cloud environment.

3) Forecast – Sales and Operations teams, meet AWS Forecast – – crunching time series data to more accurately forecast business demands.

4) OutPost – Solving the security problem, one rack at a time. If your business is reluctant to take on the cloud due to security risks or competitive concerns, but you still need the ease of AWS services, this is the solution. Bring the top AWS services in to your datacenter with OutPost.

5) RDS on VMware – take the database platform that is used by almost half of the world’s companies due to its simplification of database management and allow it to run in a hybrid cloud environment on VMware. Public cloud enabling improvements in hybrid cloud.

Honorable Mentions – By Category


A Class Instances – As cloud practitioners we don’t think about thermal costs and energy consumption of our environments, but AWS has. Efficient, inexpensive, fast clock times and speedy network; these instances will be an invaluable resource to a effective, cost efficiant environment.

Ground Station – talk about spreading your wings! AWS announce a fully-managed service for satellite communications. Need ground stations in order to connect to satellite networks but struggling with high infrastructure and operating costs. This will be a game changer for remote IOT devices.


Timestream – IoT devices producing massive events per day need a database constructed to handle the load without the cost and overhead of enterprise databases.

Quantum Ledger AWS is very good at dropping a new product that can make development and operations of technology you need to operate your business effective. However it’s rare for AWS, or any cloud provider to drop a product that your board of directors may be asking about. The Quantum Ledger won’t be something you’ll see in your production environment tomorrow, but in the upcoming year the potential for it to dramatic change is very real. If you’re building products in the Finance or Healthcare space this is the datastore you should be evaluating!

Dynamo Cost Model DynamoDB has been a real win for anyone that is operating with massive datasets; but the ability to predict the costs has kept people away. So AWS did what they are good at, removing barriers; they just threw out the cost model concern. No more WCU or RCU settings, just pay for what you use. If you have been concerned about Dynamo for fear of over provisioning, now’s the time to go back and look at the product.

Machine Learning

Textract Hello insurance and legal industries! In need of converting documents to digital with a high degree of accuracy? This service radically speeds and improves the ability to do this at a low cost. Having been part of the insurance industry, I know this pain.

DeepRacer – AWS proving they like to have fun. I sure these little racers are going to be showing up at every tech companies hackathons this spring; but there is more going on here than just a fun toy. In the not too distant future getting in to a car and asking Alexa to drive you to work and the self driving systems that gets you there safely being powered by AWS services is a very real posasability.

Management and Governance

License Manager Who doesn’t have issues effectively managing enterprise software license such as Microsoft, Oracle and SAP? Managing in hybrid-cloud environments can be even more difficult – – AWS helps improve the management of this licensing through the AWS License Manager dashboard.


Transfer for SFTP – Did you hear that? That was the sound of thousands of servers being turned off at the same time. AWS showing again that they are truly customer focused. By adding this one feature they have made transfers in to S3 more secure, no more added infrastucture and accounts to maintain. Just go right to S3. This made a lot of smile as they turned off their data transfer jump hosts.

Networking and Content Delivery

App Mesh One of the biggest struggles developers have when moving containerized microservices in a hosted environment is the insight to how everything is operating. AppMesh brings those insights to you. You’ll now be able to get meaningful application performance metrics in to CloudWatch with a low amount of effort.

What Re:Invent did for me:

re:Invent continues to deliver. The products announced, the session given and the community it helps foster are unlike any other conference currently running in the technology world. The amount of effort that the teams at AWS put towards improving their products comes through at this event. AWS continues to prove they can be trusted to do the things that distract your teams from building your business. Every developer, engineer and business professional should be looking to AWS to take the burdon of tasks that distract your teams on, your business should only see improvement when operating in their cloud platform.

There was a lot of information provided about every product they offer, be sure to review the blog posts available at the re:Invent site, you’re sure to have missed something.

If you weren’t able to make it this year, check out the decks available, you’ll certainly find something there that will help you improve how you leverage AWS.

As always, Pinnacle serves to improve our customer’s use of dynamic cloud resources to allow their organizations to move faster and more securely than they have before – – please reach out if you have questions we can answer!

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