Amazon has just launched a beta of a new feature of its Web services called Simple Queue Service. SQS is intended to offer "a reliable, highly scalable hosted queue for buffering messages between distributed application components." Amazon says SQS will be available for free to registered developers. On his Enterprise Computing Weblog, Phil Windley offers a perspective on what this all means -- namely, this is a service that can be used completely outside of Amazon's core business. Is Amazon evolving from online retailer to IT provider?