The barge floating in the San Francisco Bay that was discussed last week is likely a mobile showroom with a party deck. This way, the facility can be taken anywhere around the world (by land or by sea) and show the company's wares.
Microsoft introduced Windows Azure introduces pay-by-the-minute feature” for virtual-server instances in its Windows Azure cloud. This is something that Google announced earlier.
Microsoft offers no minimum-use commitment. Google requires a minimum of 10 minutes. Developers also often do not need to spin up a VM for an entire hour.