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Day: August 23, 2023

SeamlessM4T: Multimodal Speech and Text Translation

Facebook has announced a new library:

Today, we’re introducing SeamlessM4T, the first all-in-one multimodal and multilingual AI translation model that allows people to communicate effortlessly through speech and text across different languages. SeamlessM4T supports:

  • Speech recognition for nearly 100 languages
  • Speech-to-text translation for nearly 100 input and output languages
  • Speech-to-speech translation, supporting nearly 100 input languages and 36 (including English) output languages
  • Text-to-text translation for nearly 100 languages
  • Text-to-speech translation, supporting nearly 100 input languages and 35 (including English) output languages

The open source library is available on GitHub and you can also get the model itself on HuggingFace. The nicest thing about all of this is that, unlike existing translation services, you can run it entirely offline and perform the inference on local compute.

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Training a Code-First Model in Azure ML

I have a new video:

In this video, we walk through the code in an Azure Machine Learning project and see how the pieces fit together.

There are a few more videos to go in this Azure ML series and I would recommend going through them in order to understand how we got to this video, but this one is what I’ve been building toward.

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Request: Fill out the Redgate State of the Database Landscape Survey

Ryan Booz would like a few minutes of your time:

We’d like to hear what you have to say about the topology of your database landscape, and we want to give you first access to the data after the survey closes.

By taking a few minutes to answer the questions, you can help provide clarity on how our jobs as database professionals are changing and what skills will be needed in the future to successfully manage change.

Click through for the article and fill out the survey at This survey is open until September 30, 2023, so there’s still a bit of time to share your thoughts. One annoying thing about the survey is that they ask you about all of the database platforms, even if you didn’t select that you actually use them. Fortunately, you can skip those questions.

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Deploying Azure Resources with Terraform and GitHub Actions

Reitse Eskens sets up some new resources:

When you start out with Terraform, you’ll most likely run the code locally with terraform on your own machine. Terraform works with a so-called state-file, it saves the state of the Azure deployment it left behind and compares the (new) code with the state it encounters when it runs again. Changes are resolved by changing, deleting or adding resources that don’t match the state-file.

This works fine when you’re flying solo and don’t have co-workers who can change resources as well. Whenever you need to share code, the industry standard is to use a git solution, whether GitHub, GitLab, Azure DevOps or some other solution, as long as it has version control you should be fine (providing people adhere to the correct usage of branches).

Click through for a step-by-step walkthrough, as well as explanation of the major actors in that play.

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Load Balancing in Postgres Clusters with pg_cirrus

Muhammad Ali explains how load balancing works in Postgres:

Load balancing is a critical component of high availability clusters that optimises performance, scalability, and fault tolerance. By evenly distributing database connections across multiple servers, load balancing prevents bottlenecks, efficiently handles increased workloads and improves response time.

In this blog, we will explore how standby nodes contribute to efficient workload distribution and achieving optimal query execution by directing all read/select queries to these standby nodes.

Read on to see how you can use pg_cirrus to perform query load balancing.

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SQL Standards through the Years

Brendan Tierney notes a new standard:

As of June 2023 the new standard for SQL had been released, by the International Organization for Standards. Although SQL language has been around since the 1970s, this is the 11th release or update to the SQL standard. The first version of the standard was back in 1986 and the base-level standard for all databases was released in 1992 and referred to as SQL-92. That’s more than 30 years ago, and some databases still don’t contain all the base features in that standard, although they aim to achieve this sometime in the future.

It’s a bit wacky to me that you have to pay for a copy of the SQL standard, but then again, it’s not really intended for regular people: it’s intended for companies developing new database products so they can adhere to the 70% of the standard that they want, outright ignore 20% of the standard, and replace 10% with their own incompatible versions.

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The Trials and Tribulations of Migrating SSISDB

Andrea Allred packs up boxes and moves the database across town:

Recently I needed to move a dev instance from a physical server to a virtual one and needed to do SQL upgrades. We decided it was time to spin up a new dev instance and that required moving SSISDB. I will be honest, I was not prepared for all the things. I also did not have a password for the encryption so I had to force things to work. Because this was a dev server, I wasn’t as worried about what I would lose, I just wanted it to work. Here is what I did.

There’s a lot more here than “restore database from backup,” so click through to read the steps.

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Delegating Permissions Management in SQL Server

Andreas Wolter has people for that:

Both roles can GRANT/DENY/REVOKE any permission within a database. Since that makes members of these roles super powerful, their membership should always be tightly controlled and audited. (also see: Security concept: Audit Trail).
Consequently, most customers just keep this power to the main Administrators-group.

However, there are cases where it is useful to enable a set of non-admin users—let’s call them LowPermission-Managers—to work in a more self-sufficient way and enable them to grant some permissions to other users without the need to involve “the Administrators”.
The emphasis is on “some permissions” asthis only makes sense for low privileges. Making the LowPermissionManagers members of db_owner or db_securityadmin -roles would defeat the purpose.

Read on for two techniques which allow you to do just that.

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