I'm sitting here in the PDC 08 Keynote. Ray Ozzie has just announced Windows Azure - a new Windows platform "in the cloud". In other words a set of services hosted in Microsoft's datacenters that you can deploy your apps into. As a platform it has a whole systems management side to it.
The service model uses services, endpoints - contracts ... seems familiar. You deploy the code and a model describing the app so the systems management can support your app.
Storage system is highly available with storage for blobs, tables and queues. Supports dynamic load balancing and caching
Azure development is done in Visual Studio and supports both managed and unmanaged code. New "cloud" project templates give you a pair of projects - one is a standard familiar .NET project and the other is the one is configuation that describes the app.
The Azure portal lets you change the configuration dynamically to scale up as required. Currently you have to edit the XML but they will be providing a UI for the configuration.
This all looks pretty exciting - looking forward to getting hold of the bits tomorrow