Where's it all going?

Since its inception, the web has been a land of unknown promise. The economy of the late 90's rivaled if not eclipsed the Gold Rush of 150 years ago, yet every day another apparently brilliant internet business disappears: Webvan, Kozmo, and USWeb/March 1st to name but a few. Other technologies, such as Linux or MP3, spark ongoing battles, in the courtrooms and in the marketplace, and threaten to destroy or be destroyed. How do you develop a successful technological strategy amid the ever-shifting gleam of silicon?

The best strategy is to assume that the changes in technology will continue to redefine the possibilities. At Dovetail, we believe the real changes are still only beginning, that new technologies will continue to redefine the way we live, work and play in ways we cannot even begin to imagine. Although we strive to stay abreast of what's currently available, there is no such thing as the one perfect tool, nor the ultimate technology, and no one has the ultimate right answer. Our goal is therefore not to pick the perfect solution, but to make certain that the work done today will will integrate with the possibilities of tomorrow. We are therefore familiar and comfortable with the many technologies of today, including GNU/Linux, Windows and Macintosh; databases such as Oracle, PostgreSQL, SQLServer and MySQL; and programming languages, including Java, Javascript, Perl, and Cold Fusion; and web servers such as Apache and IIS.

It's particularly important to understand that for most projects, the end result is anything but -- businesses continue to function, grow, evolve, and change -- so too must the underlying technology. No solution is final, rather the best solutions provide a bridge to the next iteration, scale to meet demands, and provide the necessary flexibility for change. Technology is a facilitator, and an enabler, but never a magic bullet.

In the end, a well-designed solution must focus on information flow, communication channels and business processes to best insure that work is done to the highest standards, while remaining open and portable. Capturing the ongoing knowledge transfer within a community, and being able to migrate from tool to tool or platform to platform as things evolve, offers a far more flexible growth pattern than locking into a single, proprietary system that can't grow with you nor with the market. The best solutions are but stepping stones to the future.


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