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Survivor's Guide to 2006: Publisher's Privilege

We see innovation in all types of business, from manufacturing to finance to retail. A company pioneers a process or product and within months (sometimes weeks or days) competitors run with the idea as if it were their own. Recall, for instance, that Nordstrom's "No Problem" return policy was radical at the time--"you mean you actually give customers whatever they demand, no questions asked?" Yet Nordstrom's high-end competitors followed suit, most times creating something inferior to the original.

Leadership and innovation come down to having the guts to put into practice unconventional, sometimes off-the-wall ideas. It's all about having the guts to strap your creativity and convictions on your back and carry them where you think they need to go.

At Network Computing, we pride ourselves on doing just that--taking risks with new kinds of products and content to serve you, our loyal readers, not to conform to some established notion of what makes good technology journalism. Here are just a few of our unique approaches.

» For IT, By IT: It's not just the Network Computing tagline: It's our editorial philosophy. We remain the only major IT media property written for technology leaders by technology leaders. Each of our tech editors has walked in your shoes, managing technology in business. And though other IT media look down their noses at technologists as mere order-takers (in this warped view of the world, only "business" people make tech decisions), our editors appreciate the power and complexity of technology, while understanding that technology is worthless if it doesn't advance business goals.

» NWC Inc.: We came up with a wild idea a few years ago: Create an environment for integrating and using technology to support real-world business needs like on-time manufacturing, customer service, supply chain management and outsourcing. After creating a business plan for the corporate bean counters to justify six figures in funding, NWC Inc. was born. This mock midsize electronics manufacturer, with headquarters in Green Bay, Wis., and a manufacturing facility in Syracuse, N.Y., serves as a 24/7 production environment for testing everything from business intelligence, CRM and ERP software to storage and server hardware.

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