“I feel the need. The need for speed" sums ups the role of caching in distributed applications. When your application involves database lookups or service calls, every millisecond of latency adds up, particularly for high demand, “internet scale” solutions. Do you really need to execute a database query each time you’re validating a zip code? How often does your product catalog change – wouldn’t it be more efficient to just hold it in memory versus making a service or SQL call?
Caching is (hopefully) already part of your on-premises solutions, and with Windows Azure Caching you can easily pull in the same functionality but know that it’s backed up by the Windows Azure SLA; “leave the driving to us” in other words. I invite you to take a closer look at this incredibly powerful yet simple to incorporate feature in my latest segment of Practical Azure on MSDN DevRadio.