Many vendors may call it the "year of customer power," with business customers demanding--and getting--more-flexible licensing options, more-demonstrable ROI, and more time to close the deal. Some may remember it as a year to focus on a core competency, while others made bold diversification moves. It was a year of lively debate over offshore outsourcing, with many people forgetting the big picture: an increasingly global economy. It was the year that high-flying IPOs returned (Google), and even if you thought the value was inflated from the get-go, the excitement leading up to it felt good. For many of us, it was a year that spam was out of control and filters cleared out the good stuff and let in the bad. I wish we could say it was the year that the industry took the lead in security. But, I fear, the bad guys are getting nastier, more clever, and more destructive.
Still, that doesn't diminish my belief that the road ahead will be filled with remarkable innovation, more-effective use of business technology, smart leaders, and exciting careers for college grads just entering the field. Surely, the pace will be fast, the competition will be fierce, and the need for constant change and agility will be relentless. But, I hope, it will be rewarding for you all. Here's to a great 2005.