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Microsoft Unveils Windows Azure

It is, according to Microsoft‘s chief software architect Ray Ozzie, “Windows for the cloud.” Yesterday at Microsoft’s Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles he gave the first showing of the company’s cloud computing service, named Windows Azure, which is Microsoft’s grand entrance into the cloud computing business, and due to be released in conjunction with the next OS, Windows 7.

Although Microsoft might have a virtual stranglehold on PC operating systems, it’s far behind in the cloud computing stakes. Amazon is already there, and Google with its Google Docs, is far ahead, leading Sam Shillace, who runs Google Docs, to tell the BBC:

"Competition, even stiff competition from Microsoft doesn’t bother us because it will either make the internet as a whole better or it will be irrelevant to making it better."

"The way people work and the way people communicate, openness and velocity and nimbleness and focus are much more valuable and I think that’s a very big shift."

Amazon’s Elastic Cloud Service has by used by developers from Facebook to the Washington Post.