Dear Readers,

The growth of the Internet has been nothing short of phenomenal and has eclipsed the expectations of even the most ardent technologists. What we can expect in the next 10 years is what has happened to most technological breakthroughs ­ government regulation.

Currently, most states are experiencing financial pressure and are searching for new sources of tax revenue. Consequently, we will see a lifting of the current ban on the taxation of e-commerce transactions. It is estimated that state and local governments in the United States are losing as much as $13 billion annually due to current laws regarding taxation of e-commerce transactions.

Another major area for government regulation is privacy, especially with the adoption of the Homeland Security Act which allows government agencies to monitor and review Internet activity and behavior. In particular, the so-called "emergency disclosure" amendment in Section 225(d), the 2002 Cyber Security Enhancement Act, requires Internet service providers to reveal private communication to government agencies without any judicial authority or any evidence of wrongdoing.

In this issue, Larry English's column discusses present and possible future government regulations that relate to information quality. Also in this issue, we are pleased to present the first article of a five-part series written by Shaku Atre and Robert Blumberg. This month's article introduces a series of topics that will look at the emerging solutions for treating unstructured data and some of the related business opportunities. You'll also want to read Jamie Barrette's article on portals, David Hay's data modeling article and Rob Gillette's discussion of Web services.

As always, thanks for reading DM Review, and be sure to e-mail me at rpowell@dmreview.com with any comments or suggestions you may have regarding our magazine or either of our Web sites ­ DMReview.com and dataWarehouse.com.

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