REALLY distributed architectures are playing a bigger and bigger role in application development these days and Azure is an exciting bit of “Cloud” based technology.
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SQL Data Services
Microsoft® SQL Data Services (SDS) offers highly scalable and Internet-facing distributed database services in the cloud for storing and processing relational queries. SDS can help you develop and provision new applications quickly with REST and SOAP based web protocols. The services are built on robust SQL Server database and Windows Server technologies, providing high availability and security.