Okay, I'll admit it. Three years ago I recall sitting in this chair and feeling a little bored with the same old topics at the data grindstone. It was all important stuff and remains so, but felt a little like old news. 2008-2009 saw the serious emergence of data governance, a welcome business development (that was also a sign of more maturity in the space).

It was also a few years ago that the appliance and massive parallel processing markets really got rolling. We saw virtualization and the cloud model for hardware and software pop up. As a reporter, I was taken with a lot of this, but wanted to not get too far ahead of myself as I had a decade ago with the middleware and SOA phenomena. Who would have thought that it was the bottom end of infrastructure hardware and software that was going to be the game changer for IT and business going forward?

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