b>Is the tech industry mature?
The evolution of technology is showing no signs of maturing whatsoever. If you look at nanomaterials or photonics, carbon nanotubes, all the things that are going on in new types of energy, environmentally better materials -- there's no shortage of new technology coming. IT is nowhere near maturity. Certainly, there's consolidation among business models and competitors, but it doesn't have the telltale signs of a mature industry where there's no innovation.
What's your take on Nick Carr's thesis that technology no longer gives corporate buyers a competitive advantage?
Just about anything in business can be either a sinkhole or a competitive advantage if you do it really, really bad or you do it really, really well. And information technology is an often misunderstood field. You've got a lot of people who don't know what they're doing and don't do it very well. For us, IT is a huge advantage. For Wal-Mart, GE, and many other companies, technology is a huge advantage and will continue to be. Does that mean that you just pour money in and gold comes out? No, you can screw it up really bad.