Or Microsoft Codename "Astoria". Just a quick one before I hop on a plane back to good old blighty (and escape from the madness that is Las Vegas) soooo....
The idea is to provide a very simple means to expose your relational data over the web in a RESTful way. Astoria is the toolkit to do exactly that. Astoria first builds an Entity Data Model of your database and then exposes your data with data services (you can control what is / isn't exposed) via a set or URLs that give access to the underlying SQL Server database. So you might have a URL such as:
What's amazing is how easy it was for Pablo to create the Entity Data Model and the related data service that exposes the data via these URLs. I should mention that the Astoria CTP bits require Orcas Beta 1.
But there's more, there is also an experimental online service hosted at http://astoria.mslivelabs.com (this hosts amongst other things the Northwind database used in the links above). Currently this has only some sample, read-only data services up there. But some time in the future it will be possible to build your own data service and have it hosted at the Astoria online service. There are currently four services available for you to play with:
Pablo has a much more comprehensive post over here.