Technology is a major force in business, producing change, opportunity, cost, challenges, and a whole new set of uncharted ethical areas. Since the great collapse of the “dot coms,” the force of technology on the transformation of business has been a bit less visible. Is it still the force it once was?
We believe the answer to this question is a resounding “Yes!”
First, the technological base continues to develop at the same rate as it has in the past. In the Conversation with Pat Gelsinger, senior vice president at Intel and chief architect for the 80486 chip, we explore why and how this creative engine continues to move forward.
Second, Gelsinger also offers a perspective on the implications of this development for businesses large and small. This theme is developed from other viewpoints throughout this issue. Seamus Phan, our Asian correspondent from Singapore, provides a look at what his part of the world is struggling with related to technology. Rosalind Picard, MIT Media Lab, shares the progress of her work in affective computing (using the computer to understand human emotion), and some of the implications for business that are coming from this work. Rosie Perera, in her essay, provides her ideas for coping with the continuing pressures from technology. My comments in Technology Watch are focused on steps a business can take to make effective use of this flood of new capability without getting washed away.
You will also find book reviews linked to the topic of technology and business, as well as a comment from Roger Eigsti (NewsNotables) on the rise in cybercrime.
Next issue our Conversation is with Don Soderquist, retired COO of Wal-Mart. By some measures the largest company in the world, Wal-Mart has provided leadership in the green movement, has brought low prices and product availability to the rural areas of the world, and at the same time has been accused of all sorts of bad practices. His perspective on these issues is not often heard, and we expect you will find this of interest.