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Thursday, October 03, 2002

Breakout Session: DIGITAL RELATIONSHIPS: YOUR CONNECTED BUSINESS (Microsoft), with Dan'l Lewin, Corp. VP, .NET

Question to audience: where's the edge of the network? Wherever you are, about sums it up. .NET commercial played...Dan'l is interested in the language used about doors and barriers. Slide: The Integration Imperative -- not particularly sexy, but what's going on under the hood is the weaving together of the necessary information. How do those who own and control and own the data authorize its use? We're here in Silicon Valley, home of unfolding inventions. When the inventions get woven into what you do is when the integration imperative becomes clear. 20, 25 years ago, the core inventions that formed the Net were developed here. TCPIP, HTML, XML, etc. A "perfect storm" was going on here in the early '90's. The final evolution of the earliest stages of the information tech revolution were coalescing into general purpose knowledge worker productivity apps, desktop suites. $1,000 pcs available, all built for connectivity via TCPIP. HTML added a dimension distinct from what telephone connectivity could provide. XML begins to bring us back to distributed, network based computing -- full circle to the vision from 20, 25 years ago. Clusters Define An Era. Enabling technology comes first, followed by a time of speculative exuberance, a crash, then a strong build out period when the technology begins to wrap around your life. This is when things get interesting. Today, the enabling tech is in place with processors, telecom, software, standards, the Net. Have radically changed or spawned genomics, GPS and how it's used (ex. -- inventory control unlike anything business has known), cell phones, PDAs. Little disruptive moments in time lead to big break-aways: Apple and its access to PARC's ideas about GUIs and disc storage. We are in the middle of a time when revolutionary things are about to happen, but it's tough to see from here. Islands Of The Internet. Today we have digital devices that are hobby-hard, not wrapped around your life yet. Lou Gerstner quote from the 2001 Annual Report: it's wrong to think it will be "back to business as usual" in the technology field after world economies recover. XML Web Services Standards. Agreeing about how you use information securely from any machine, "that's really good stuff." "The value proposition is very compelling." This is where the really big integrators are going. See WS-I .NET: Intended to connect people, systems and devices. Consider Boeing. They build a product that they OEM to American Airlines. Interactions between 50,000 entities needed to accomplish this. With standard protocols and interoperability, this is possible. The interconnection points are there. Microsoft looks at it starting with tools (servers), clients (any device). The Sandhill Group in the Bay Area: business benefits and ROI drive most projects. System architectures will get built on top of the framework that everyone's working on now. Financial services, ATM network. Currency is trust, a relationship at a higher level that is federated at the consumer level because the merchant doesn't trust plastic. It's not about the tech, it's about moving the information. Business imperatives include getting connected, capturing value at all levels. Microsoft plans to focus on the connectivity, the software technology for connecting *your* world of information, people and devices. Whoever you may be. Business implementation playing a big role at this stage. It's not just Moore's law. We now have ever-increasing bandwidth everywhere. In the next 3-5 years the business framework will be built out. Software matters more than ever. Q&A: Question about role of IP telephony. Answer: it's huge. We look at it from the mobility products area, servers, desktops, voice-over-IP-conferencing, all that. The fundamental premise being everything's connected. Is .NET an ingredient brand, and if you could change that would you? Answer: we reviewed the .NET stats as an initiative within the company about a month ago. Many people tack the label .NET on the services aspect alone, but the tools and other aspects are equally important. We made some mistakes and learned from the market that people wanted to operate those services themselves. Our next servers will allow this. This will mean a Ford could provide services for itself, then decide later on it wants to trust Dell. Let me reiterate there is no .NET group. It's part of everything we're doing.

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