Ask About Azure And Win A Microsoft Home Office Kit

We've been inviting questions about Azure in our recent series of posts looking at the Windows cloud platform and what it can do for you if you decide to try it out. Microsoft will answer those questions directly, and now here's an additional incentive to ask them: the question we judge the most interesting will receive a Microsoft Home Office kit, comprising a copy of Office Home and Business 2010 plus an Arc keyboard and Torch mouse.

We'll be taking questions from now until 5pm on November 24, and we'll give the asker of the standout question this awesome prize pack, valued at $554. Ask away: just post your question here or on the original posts. Full terms and conditions for the contest can be viewed here.


    I understand cloud computing and application development, but what does the power of Azure bring to the average user?

    Being 13 years old, Microsoft Azure has piqued my curiosity. But I cannot help wondering, if this becomes mainstream, what will be the implications on the aspiring techie youth of today's society be?

    How long has Powder been a software programmer, and why don't his electromagnetic abilities mess with his computer?

      can't like this enough

        It's good to know that the whole 'destroyed by a lightning bolt' thing at the end wasn't real. I was left with the feeling that he'd opted out because he would never have a real life, or fit in. Now I see he's working with the cloud, instead of being vaporised by one. My question, "Does he work in a Faraday cage?"

    I've always been confused about the Azure cloud computing platform. I understand Amazon's Web Services, but I just don't understand the difference between them. There’s so much happening in the cloud computing area nowadays, and Windows Azure just seems like Microsoft’s version of Amazon. I notice that Azure is coined as "platform as a service". Can you walk us through the differences?

    Oh and I'd really love the MS Arc Keyboard.

    Is this relevant for big/corporate users only? I operate a home business and would like to know if this is something I should invest time learning about.

    Apple is reknown for going the extra mile for its customers. My experience with its staff in person, online, on the phone and with its products have been exemplary over the last six years.

    As the Apple iCloud is the market leader in consumer cloud computing, how will you reduce switching costs to migrate to Azure for existing iCloud subscribers, especially those who have already invested time and effort in building a store of personal photos, webpages, etc?

    Keep in mind that your answer is not just a reflection of the programming ability of your staff but also an indicator of how customer focussed is Microsoft really??!? e.g., Can we migrate in under three clicks of the mouse?

    What the hell is Azure? And how can it help me in my everyday work and personal life?

    What can Azure do for a small business that Office 365 can't? We have a small consultancy that uses Sharepoint, Outlook and Lync from Office 365.

    Why did Microsoft decide to name it Azure?

    I have an idea for a cloud-based application that involves uploading and storing large images.

    I'm not a programmer, but all kinds of cloud complexities come to mind in modelling this - bandwidth usage, upload timeouts, optimal use of HTML5 browser local storage, etc. Where can I go to get advice on modelling a practical structure within Azure to best handle this?

    Given all the talk about cloud computing, I thought clouds came in white, silver or even grey. So why call it Azure (Blue)? Blue skies mean no cloud!

    Taking this logic one step further, why would I use no-cloud cloud computing?

    Looking at the website, its all about business and not the individual - perhaps Azure for the "Blue Chips"?

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