I didn’t agree with everything Gartner Research Fellow Ken McGee said in his keynote address at the Gartner BI conference in Los Angeles this week. A few attendees said he'd shortchanged overworked CIOs who really do understand their bosses' business goals, and he might have sent conflicting messages of success for the CEOs and survival for the CIOs he interacts with.

McGee did score points and caught the crowd square though, with a simple response to a longstanding question for many of us in and around information technology. It was an answer to the most common question he hears (and we all hear year after year) from flat or down-budgeted CIOs:

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