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Amazon Web Services' Simple Workflow Service (SWF)

Posted on 2.21.2012

Amazon has just introduced Amazon Simple Workflow Service (Amazon SWF), enabling developers to coordinate processes when building distributed applications.

Developers using the service will be able to structure various processing steps in an application as tasks. Amazon SWF can then coordinate those tasks and manage their execution dependencies, scheduling and concurrency based on a developer’s application logic. The service stores tasks, dispatches them to application components, tracks their progress, and keeps their latest state. Pretty awesome.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) is already using Amazon SWF as part of several space and earth science missions including the Mars Exploration Rover. The Amazon SWF Service gives JPL the ability to leverage internal and external resources, enabling their applications to scale dynamically and run in a distributed manner. NASA JPL has integrated Amazon SWF into their Cloud Oriented Architecture and its reference implementation, Polyphony.

“With Amazon SWF, developers can now easily coordinate distributed application components across on-premises and cloud environments using their choice of programming languages,” says Reto Kramer, general manager of AWS' Application Connection Services. “By relying on Amazon SWF to handle the coordination of distributed task execution, developers can now focus on building the differentiating aspects of their applications and leave the undifferentiated heavy lifting of building and managing workflow engines to AWS.”


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