Expanding Cognitive Services Pilot for Azure Government

Steve Michelotti

Update (05/16/17): Emotion was originally called out a separate API but all functionality is included as part of the Face API.  The standalone Emotion API is not part of our deployment in Azure Government.

In March, we announced the initial preview of Cognitive Services in Azure Government. Today we are expanding the initial preview to include all Azure Government customers.

Building Artificial Intelligence into your applications can be a daunting task. With Cognitive Services, we bring a set of APIs that allow you to quickly integrate AI into your application. Our partners during the preview have been using these APIs to build some compelling scenarios. One law enforcement customer is using the translation API to ensure a reliable and accurate translation when interviewing people. Another customer is piloting the use of the facial recognition API to replace their custom facial recognition, tripling their accuracy.

If you are interested in see what a developer can do with the Cognitive Services, you can check out the 3-part series and video we published in March:

The capabilities that are currently included in the preview are:

There are few key differences right now from the APIs in Azure Commercial:

If you have any questions about the preview or problems creating an account, please reach out to azgovfeedback@microsoft.com.

Getting Started

To start using a Cognitive Services API that is part of our government preview you need to do the following:

  1. Create an Azure Government Subscription – If you do not have one already you can sign up for the Azure Government Trial.
  2. Install Azure PowerShell and the Cognitive Services PowerShell Package.
  3. Login to your Azure Government Account with PowerShell.
  4. Create a resource group.  You can skip if you have an existing resource group:
    New-AzureRMResourceGroup -Name {resourcegroup} -Location 'usgovvirginia'
  1. Create a new Cognitive Services account for the API you are planning to use. Repeat this step for each API you want to use:
    New-AzureRmCognitiveServicesAccount -ResourceGroupName '{resourcegroup}' -name '{name}' -Type {ComputerVision | Emotion | Face | SpeechTranslation | TextTranslation} -SkuName F0 -Location 'usgovvirginia'

    Note that if the RP is note registered please register Microsoft.CognitiveServices.

  2. Retrieve the key for use in your application:
    $key = New-AzureRmCognitiveServicesAccountKey -ResourceGroupName '{resourcegroup}' -name '{resourcename}' -KeyName {Key1 | Key2}

For more information on the Cognitive Services PowerShell please see their documentation.

To validate your keys, you can use the sample request generator here – https://cognitivevirginiaprod.portal.azure-api.us/docs/services/

We welcome your comments and suggestions to help us continually improve your Azure Government experience. To stay up to date on all things Azure Government, be sure to subscribe to our RSS feed and to receive emails, click “Subscribe by Email!” on the Azure Government Blog. To experience the power of Azure Government for your organization, sign up for an Azure Government Trial.


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