Microsoft's Azure cloud computing service is rolling out two new improvements that may be of interest to enterprise application development teams. First, it is updating Azure Search, its "search as a service" offering, so that it delivers more relevant results. It accomplishes that goal with a new feature called "Tag scoring" that is currently available as a preview. The tag scoring API allows developers to use machine learning to group users into categories and provide search results more likely to be of interest to them.
Second, Azure has published new guidance on building hybrid cloud dev/test environments. "These environments use your local Internet connection and one of your public IP addresses and step you through setting up a functioning, cross-premises Azure virtual network," explained Joe Davies, a Microsoft senior content developer. "When complete, you can begin performing application development, experimenting with simplified IT workloads, and gauge the performance of a site-to-site VPN connection relative to your location on the Internet."