Well... it's not really news, these offers have been around since PDC... what's new is that we actually broadcast the availability of these programs.  Check out the Windows Azure Team Blog for more info: http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsazure/archive/2010/01/27/try-windows-azure-at-no-charge.aspx

 Of course... what is ALSO new is the fact that billing starts February 1st... so make sure you manage your accounts and deployments properly to avoid any unexpected charges. 

 Couple of great posts on how to manage your account efficiently and effectively:

http://geekswithblogs.net/iupdateable/archive/2010/01/20/qanda-how-do-you-avoid-being-charged-unnecessarily-for-windows.aspx

http://geekswithblogs.net/iupdateable/archive/2010/01/19/qanda-when-do-i-get-charged-for-compute-hours-on.aspx

-Dan