"Casablanca is a Microsoft incubation effort to support cloud-based client-server communication in native code using a modern asynchronous C++ API design," explained the DevLabs page.
Casablanca supports the access of REST services from native code on Vista, Windows 7 and the Windows 8 Consumer Preview by providing asynchronous C++ bindings to HTTP, JSON and URIs. There's a Visual Studio extension SDK to help devs write C++ HTTP client side code in Windows 8 Metro-Style apps, and promised support for writing native-code REST for Azure, with Visual Studio integration. (The VS11 Azure supportisn't there yet.)
Casablanca "builds on lessons from .NET, from Node.js, from Erlang, and from other influencers to create a modern model that is meant to be easy to program while still being scalable, composable, and flexible," Somasegar explained.
Casablanca, like other DevLabs releases, is not guaranteed to become a shipping product or part of a shipping product. It is meant for experimentation and developer feedback.
"We would love to know whether you’re interested in using C++ to consume and implement cloud services, and if so, what kind of support you want in order to do so, whether “Casablanca” is on the right track, and how you’d like to see it evolve," said Somasegar, suggesting users share their two cents in the forums.