My first thoughts on Microsoft's Azure ended up at Folknology.
Basically, it seems to me that M$ aren't clear what they're aiming for. An Amazon-like generic hosting option. Or a GAE-like integrated experience. I'd be more impressed if they'd produced a great hosting story for ASP. At least then you'd feel that they had the something that they believe in. Dropping hints about PHP or Rails on the one hand, while pushing tighter integration with Visual Studio on the other, just sounds dissembling at best, and downright deliberately misleading at worst.