November 16, 2023

AWS re:Invent 2023 Q&A: SingleStore Will Show You How to Transform Your Data Architecture to Deliver Real-time Results and Support AI/ML Projects

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Ready for AWS re:Invent 2023?  Attending the show?  Make sure to visit with SingleStore.

AWS re:Invent 2023 takes place November 27 - December 1, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada, across multiple venues.

Read this exclusive interview between VMblog and Madhukar Kumar, CMO at SingleStore, the world’s only database that empowers users to transact, analyze and contextualize data in real time.

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VMblog:  If you were giving an AWS re:Invent attendee a quick overview of the company, what would you say?  How would you describe the company?

Madhukar Kumar:  SingleStore delivers the only database in the market that allows users to transact, analyze and contextualize their data in real time. SingleStoreDB uniquely unifies transactions and analytics in the same engine to deliver high-performance analytics on operational data in millisecond response times at petabyte scale - without the need for data movement.  This is crucial in today's world, as real-time insights are key to the way we live our lives; the way we entertain ourselves; the way we listen to music; the way we order groceries. Real-time insights keep your BI tools fresh; they keep your ride-sharing app with the most current price, and they ensure you never miss a fraudulent payment. 

Real-time insights are even more critical as we are at the beginning of the next AI evolution with companies evaluating new capabilities and opportunities for growth. Real-time data will be center stage in most gen AI apps and services that are cloud based - and most will be built with a Retrieval Augmented Generation (RAG) pattern. We are very excited about the cutting edge vector capabilities in SingleStoreDB to help power gen AI use cases. AI needs data to be elevated to information through context, and SingleStoreDB is truly the only contextual database in the market to make this happen.

SingleStoreDB is available on all three big cloud providers including AWS, and has hundreds of customers including 100+ Fortune 500, Forbes Global 2000 and Inc. 5000 brands.

VMblog:  Your company is sponsoring this year's AWS re:Invent event.  Can you talk about what that sponsorship looks like?

Kumar:  We'll be at booth #1586 and also hosting a Jam Session. AWS Jams are interactive and hands-on events allowing individuals to work in teams and respond to a set of challenges within workloads running in AWS. Our Jam session will focus on a SingleStore specific AI challenge. As part of this exercise, developers will have to build a simple gen AI application to parse a PDF document and use semantic search to ask questions about the content in plain language, using AWS foundation models. SingleStore's Principal Evangelist, Wes Kennedy will be at the Jam Session on Nov. 27 from 2-5 p.m. PT to help guide attendees and answer questions.

VMblog:  How can attendees of the event find you?  What do you have planned at your booth this year?  What type of things will attendees be able to do at your booth? 

Kumar:  Attendees can visit our booth to engage with us or attend the Jam Session we are hosting. We will be leading a hands-on session focused on a SingleStore specific AI challenge. As previously mentioned, attendees can build a simple gen AI application with the help of our team. During the Jam Session on Nov. 27 from 2-5 p.m. PT,  Wes will help guide attendees throughout the process, so stop by if you can. You can go here to learn all about what we have planned.

VMblog:  Have you sponsored AWS re:Invent in the past?  If so, what is it about this show that keeps you coming back as a sponsor?

Kumar:  Yes, we were a sponsor of AWS re:Invent last year as well. This conference is an excellent opportunity to get hands-on experience with cutting-edge tech, meet peers and chat with industry thought leaders. It's a big part of why we keep coming back. It's not just about sharing our latest innovations, but also learning from and collaborating with fellow experts shaping the future of technology.

VMblog:  What do you attribute to the success and growth of this industry?

Kumar:  Since the start of the digital age, we have seen an explosion of data generation across various sectors. As such, the need to store, manage and retrieve vast amounts of data propelled the database industry to new heights. Then as organizations recognized the value of data to help support decision making, databases with analytical capabilities became a key differentiator to aid data analysis and reporting.

Even more, the ability to integrate data from disparate systems and scale operations - whether by adding additional resources to a single server or distributing data across multiple servers - grew the need for databases. The rise of cloud computing also led to databases becoming more widely accessed and deployed by offering more flexibility, cost efficiency and reduced overhead maintenance.

However, the sustained success and growth of the database industry will come from generative AI. Data management and analysis is crucial to the deployment of LLMs and AI projects. Without timely, quality data, LLMs will not be able to deliver the results that organizations need. As LLMs mature, organizations will need databases that have the ability to quickly collect, process and contextualize data. This is vital to powering the next generation of AI: real-time AI applications.

VMblog:  Do you have any speaking sessions during the event?  If so, can you give us the details?

Kumar:  Our main presence will be at the Jam Session. As mentioned, SingleStore's Jam Session will focus on a SingleStore specific AI challenge. We'll engage with attendees through an exciting real-world AI use case. We're looking forward to helping attendees complete this interactive challenge.

VMblog:  What are you personally most interested in seeing or learning at AWS re:Invent?

Kumar:  I'm most excited to further understand real world production AI deployments, and am curious what new announcements will be made not only from AWS but others in the database space. Amid the proliferation of gen AI solutions, I believe there will also be a number of conversations centered around how the cloud computing community can get a better understanding of how businesses can create the right architecture for scaling all cloud services securely, economically and responsibly to deliver the best value.

VMblog:  What kind of message will an attendee hear from you this year?  What will they take back to help sell their management team and decision makers?

Kumar:  This year, I'll be talking to attendees about how real-time AI will be the future of AI. But to make this a reality, organizations need to select databases that handle large volumes of data while processing information quickly. Moreover, databases with vector capabilities (like SingleStoreDB) will be essential to improving gen AI systems as they reduce the time and effort to find all relevant information for informing AI outputs while increasing the speed of searches. With more companies aiming to introduce LLMs into their operations in the new year, the need for improved data retrieval and management capabilities has never been greater.

If you stop by our booth, you will leave with an understanding of how SingleStore can help transform your data architecture to deliver real-time results and support AI/ML projects. We help companies simplify their data stacks to both transact and analyze data on a single platform while delivering fast response times and scalability. We're also data agnostic - supporting structured, semi-structured and unstructured data types across hybrid, on-premise and cloud environments. Our platform helps companies handle large transactions and analytics while generating real-time insights. This is the platform to make working with data-intensive workloads a breeze.

VMblog:  Can you double click on your company's technologies?  And talk about the types of problems you solve for an AWS re:Invent attendee.

Kumar:  At SingleStore, we can work with almost any kind of data and extremely large datasets (in petabytes) to help customers rapidly process queries and transactions. We help companies build AI applications by contextualizing their private data in milliseconds for LLMs. SingleStore can help attendees solve the following problems:

  • Slow data processing: Companies that need lightning-fast processing speeds like streaming platforms and processes like fraud detection need databases like SingleStoreDB to deliver quick response times. With SingleStoreDB's distributed architecture, we can process data quickly to help organizations make decisions faster.
  • Data architecture complexity: When organizations deploy multiple databases, this leads to significant barriers in information processing and contextualization - while driving up resource usage and infrastructure costs. But with a simplified data architecture like SingleStoreDB, organizations can access transactional and analytical capabilities in a single repository, eliminating the need for multiple databases to handle data storage and management.
  • Scalability and integration: Organizations generate more and more data each day, amplifying the need for a database that scales with them. For example, large-scale analytics workloads need a platform with the ability to scale out horizontally across multiple nodes to handle vast volumes of data and perform complex analytics queries at scale. SingleStoreDB will scale with organizations' data needs, helping to drive improved resource utilization.
  • Lack of analytical capabilities: More and more, the ability to gain complex insights in real time can help businesses deliver faster, more informed decisions. Databases like SingleStoreDB that offer advanced indexing and query optimization capabilities can help organizations develop a more comprehensive understanding of their data along with the ability to quickly identify trends and patterns. As organizations deploy their own LLMs, leveraging analytical capabilities can help AI systems develop more accurate outputs.

VMblog:  While thinking about your company's solutions, can you give readers a few examples of how your offerings are unique?  What are your differentiators?  What sets you apart from the competition?

Kumar:  At SingleStore, we allow users to transact, analyze and contextualize their data in real time, all on one platform. Our platform enables users to receive responses in milliseconds instead of seconds. This is a key difference maker for industries that require fast data retrieval and contextualization, like streaming and cybersecurity.

VMblog:  AWS re:Invent is typically a great venue for a company to launch a new product or an update to an existing product.  Will your company be announcing anything new?  If so, without asking you to give away too much, can you give us a sneak preview?

Kumar:  We recently announced several new product innovations at SingleStore Now, our real-time AI conference in San Francisco. Among these product innovations, we introduced a new index to enable faster vector search and also added vectors as a new data type. In addition, we launched a new portfolio of services to enable customers to connect to other data sources and scale out AI workloads by easily adding compute resources to power LLMs and inference models, bringing gen AI where enterprise data resides.

We also announced  our Elegance SDK, a product offering that provides templates that make it simpler for developers to build applications and for data scientists, engineers and developers to turn data scripts into real-time interactive web applications more quickly. Likewise, our Notebooks offering allows developers to initiate Python/SQL Notebooks either on a specified schedule or based on an event trigger, pulling data, embeddings and contextualization on the fly - an important component of enabling real-time AI.

We'll be chatting through these innovations in more detail at the event, but readers can learn more about our latest products here.

VMblog:  Are companies going all in for the cloud?  Or do you see a return back to on-premises?  Are there roadblocks in place keeping companies from going all cloud? 

Kumar:  The adoption of cloud solutions varies across companies. While many are embracing the cloud for its scalability and flexibility, there isn't a universal shift towards it. Some businesses still rely on on-premises solutions, especially if they have specific data security, compliance or legacy system requirements. Although there are no roadblocks in place keeping companies from going all into the cloud, there are still roadblocks to full cloud adoption for some organizations, particularly those concerned about data security, compliance, cost and legacy infrastructure that's not easily migrated. So, the direction a company takes depends on its unique needs and considerations.

VMblog:  The keynote stage will be covering a number of big topics, but what big changes or trends does your company see taking shape as we head into 2024?

Kumar:  Moving into the new year, I'm expecting that AI will remain a top priority for enterprises. Real-time data will be the norm in most gen AI apps and services, given that most will be built with a Retrieval Augmented Generation (RAG) pattern. Due to more regulation efforts, we should see more innovation in the RAG data management and retrieval patterns - for example, more control and visibility over data provenance fed to AI, data access, data governance, audit and security, etc., that would have to scale with massive amounts of data.

Vectors will be table stakes for all databases, and hybrid searches (keyword match + vectors) will become the standard for enterprises, especially those that have vast amounts of data and are looking to build real-time AI apps.

Given the fact that GPUs on laptops and desktops are getting better (case in point: Apple's M3 chip using dynamic caching and the upcoming release of Intel's Meteor Lake Chip), we will see LLMs on laptops and other home and wearable devices like Meta's Ray Ban glasses and watches, giving the same level of questions and answer capabilities with contextual data that we currently have with ChatGPT with audio and video inputs.

In addition to LLMs becoming smaller, we will see significant improvements in the response quality and response times by using a network of LLMs for complex use cases.

VMblog:  Are you giving away any prizes at your booth or participating in any prize giveaways?

Kumar:  In our ‘Spin the Wheel' Raffle, attendees can win various prizes including: SingleStore t-shirts and Ember mugs. The biggest prize we'll be giving away is a Playstation PS5, which will not be at the booth but mailed to the winner. So come visit our booth to spin the wheel and win some prizes!

VMblog:  Is your company sponsoring any type of party or get together during the event that you'd like to notify attendees about?

Kumar:  During re:Invent, we'll be hosting two thought leadership discussions around AI development. On Tuesday, Nov. 28 from 12- 2 p.m. PT, we'll be hosting a conversation about GenAI at Sushisamba restaurant. The next day on Wednesday, Nov. 29 from 12 - 2 p.m. PT, we'll come together again to discuss real-time analytics in the same location. We'll also have another opportunity to connect with attendees through private 1-on-1 meetings, so if guests want to learn more about us and our capabilities, consider signing up for one of these sessions.

David Marshall

David Marshall has been involved in the technology industry for over 19 years, and he's been working with virtualization software since 1999. He was able to become an industry expert in virtualization by becoming a pioneer in that field - one of the few people in the industry allowed to work with Alpha stage server virtualization software from industry leaders: VMware (ESX Server), Connectix and Microsoft (Virtual Server).

Through the years, he has invented, marketed and helped launch a number of successful virtualization software companies and products. David holds a BS degree in Finance, an Information Technology Certification, and a number of vendor certifications from Microsoft, CompTia and others. He's also co-authored two published books: "VMware ESX Essentials in the Virtual Data Center" and "Advanced Server Virtualization: VMware and Microsoft Platforms in the Virtual Data Center" and acted as technical editor for two popular Virtualization "For Dummies" books. With his remaining spare time, David founded and operates one of the oldest independent virtualization news blogs, And co-founded, a publication dedicated to Cloud Computing. Starting in 2009 and continuing all the way to 2016, David has been honored with the vExpert distinction by VMware for his virtualization evangelism.

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