Available in January 2023, the latest version of the Syntasa platform provides further improvements to the integrated Jupyter notebooks, notably notebook collaboration; new features including RStudio integration and app import/export that can be used to bring sample apps into your environment; and additional security and user experience improvements.
Since the introduction of integrated notebooks in Syntasa 6.2, we have continued to enhance and improve the feature in each subsequent version. Syntasa 7.1 advances the feature with the following improvements:
- Notebook collaboration - While creating a new project or experiment in the Syntasa notebooks, you may need to work with other users to develop or debug parts of the code in a single notebook. The notebook collaboration feature brings Google Docs-style collaboration where you are able to see other users' cursor and updates in real-time in the notebook.
- GPU support for notebook kernels - Syntasa 7.0 introduced an expansion to the notebook kernel so there's less of a need to attach an external runtime to your notebook. We have expanded the notebook kernel further, allowing you to enable GPU on the kernel for when you need extra computing power at the launch of the notebook. The notebook can still be expanded further by attaching an external runtime for even more computing resources.
- RStudio Server - Similar to integrating Jupyter notebooks into the Syntasa ecosystem, we are introducing RStudio Server integration. These features enable users to run experiments quickly while still within the Syntasa platform. The RStudio Server integration is initially available as an option on AWS EMR Cluster runtimes, providing a link to launch RStudio Server utilizing the running cluster.
- App import/export - There is now the ability to import and export apps. This is intended to be used between different Syntasa environments; within a single environment, the option to copy an app can be used. The import/export capability is helpful for those users with access to multiple Syntasa environments, but also, for those with a single environment, Syntasa will be publishing sample apps that can be imported into your environment.
- Platform services update - In order to keep up with security standards and the latest versions of third-party software, we have upgraded node-jsonwebtoken to version 9.0 to resolve a vulnerability found in older versions.
- Stream support for Azure - Support for streaming services and jobs has been added for Azure with the addition of a new runtime type, Azure HDInsight Stream Cluster.
- EMR runtime applications - We've added an option for Trino for EMR runtimes. Just check the box in the runtime template definition to turn on this functionality for instances of the runtime.
- Multiple outputs for BQ Process - The BQ Process now officially supports multiple outputs. Previously there were workarounds to produce multiple datasets to be output, but it is now easily configured to do such.
User experience improvements - They may seem small, but many times it's the finest details that make a big difference in easing the use of the system. The following improvements have been made to apps and dashboards:
- Make an app's Production apparent - An app's workflow canvases are labeled and are slightly different between the development and production versions, but user feedback asked for a more significant indication that you are on the production section of an app. Therefore, we've added a "Production" watermark on the workflow canvas that clearly indicates you are viewing the production version.
- (Un)favorite an app - The (un)favorite star on apps has been available for several years, but it was only available from outside the app when in the search and filter views of all apps. Now you can (un)favorite an app from within the app.
- Breadcrumbs for the app location - Apps, along with dashboards and notebooks, reside in folders within the Workspace module of the platform. While it's easy enough to know the path and location of the app if you traversed the folders to open the app, it's also possible to enter an app from different entry points. Now regardless of how you entered an app, from within the app, we've added breadcrumbs indicating the location and folder path in which the app resides.
- Dashboard exit button clarification - Users of dashboards likely noticed that they can be accessed via the dedicated Dashboards menu or from Workspace. When viewing a dashboard if you had clicked the exit button to go back to browsing the objects, you may have been sent to either the Dashboards menu or Workspace, regardless of where you entered the dashboard from. This is now eased by remembering where you came from so the exit button returns you to the screen from where you opened the dashboard.