Sun's current strategy for open-source computing, flexible licensing models, and collaboration are the kinds of trends that will go on a time line for 2005 when InformationWeek celebrates 50 years. Business technology, of course, may be wildly different by then. The amount of change that has happened over the past 25 years is incredible. And while it's difficult (impossible? crazy?) to try and predict the future, we have some insightful perspective from leading thinkers, researchers, industry executives, and long-time readers.
"We're only beginning to realize computing's potential," Bill Gates says. "From the social to the nano level, technology will deeply impact the way we interact with machines, people, and our own bodies," says Scott Kriens, chairman and CEO of Juniper Networks. "Over the next 25 years, the technology industry will find its intelligent infrastructure: Its telegraph for the railroad system; its air-traffic-control system for the airline industry," says Stratton Sclavos, CEO of VeriSign. "It will not only mitigate cost, complexity, and compliance, but also provide an impetus for untold economic and societal progress."