From the Editor

FRAMINGHAM (07/06/2000) - The CIO Web Business 50/50 awards, like the state of online business itself, haven't stood still since we created them three years ago. We launched them as the WebMaster 50/50 in 1997 to honor 50 leading Internet sites and 50 intranets. In '98, WebMaster magazine morphed into CIO Web Business (a second section to CIO), and the awards went along for the ride.

This year, with the lines between Web business and any other business getting harder to distinguish, we redesigned CIO and brought the awards into the main book.

So what's next? Well, for starters, as CIO Editorial Director Lew McCreary points out in "Net Gains", it's not so easy to tell an Internet site from an intranet anymore. "Many sites now draw on widely diverse pools of data and serve the varied interests of multiple segments" through one Web infrastructure. In all likelihood, next year we'll just do the math and run the Web Business 100.

McCreary also notes that this year's advances have tended to be "measured and incremental." But we see a maturing taking place that presages some big leaps in the year ahead. We'll see more Web functionality in business and more business functionality in websites, a real blending of technology and services, and the spanning of value chains and marketspaces in just about every sector of the economy.

In order to give these exciting developments a chance to unfold (and to get them further away from the CIO-100 in August), we'll move next year's Web Business awards to the end of the year. The bad news is you'll have to wait longer to read about the next generation of Web initiatives. The good news is you've got five extra months to get ready to apply!

With all the changes these awards have gone through, there has been one really important element of consistency, and that's the people who judge the applicants and put together the issue. McCreary and Tim Horgan, general manager of CIO.com, have judged the intranets each year. Art Jahnke, editorial director for CIO.com, and Senior Editor Megan Santosus have been involved in judging the Internet sites from the start.

Dagmar Eiben, Web operations manager, deserves an honorary 50/50 for her work in building and enhancing our judging site. Polly Schneider led the project before leaving to join our sister publication, The Industry Standard. Kaajal Asher, Hana Barker, Kelli Botta, Kathleen Carr, Owen Edwards, Lisa Kerber, Katherine Noyes, Susannah Patton, Sarah Scalet and Tom Wailgum all participated in judging the applicants, managing the process or creating the issue.

Finally, special thanks to Santosus, who took over the coordination of this project midstream. Her experience and perspective proved invaluable.

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