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Hot Spots in Advanced Technologies
      For the IT industry's fast renovation nature, this column is used to track the up-to-date development of information technologies, to provide new ideas and hints for innovation, and to promote dissemination of advanced technologies. We will make our best efforts to keep the column contents dynamically updating and sincerely welcome our readers and users to provide suggestions on adding new technical contents.
      This issue contains some information on Light Weight Process & Agile Methods for software development, a new hot spot in the SE community. It is advocated as a technology for software development in Internet era with quick cycle and especially suitable to cases needing frequent change of requirements. Some of its philosophy sound very interesting and reasonable, for examples, stressing on human factor and "Just Enough" principle - "Neither more nor less". Some experts recommended to apply the new approach to appropriate cases.
      Although Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P) is not new in concept, in recent years many new thoughts for its applications have appeared and deserve to be mentioned for a while. It can be used to improve availability of computing resource over network. By virtue of its capability, it is not necessary to simply chase thinner and thinner clients. No wonder Intel and Microsoft will support this direction so much.
      Real-Time Computing is another hot spot in enterprise applications. It emphasizes not only on sending key information to the fingers of required people, but also in time to dramatically improve the enterprise efficiency in both operation and decision making. This will be an important issue to be considered in enterprise informatization.
      As distributed network applications becomes popular, high interoperability is required to work across different platforms. The Middleware, with standard protocols and APIs, will act more and more important role. It constitutes an active market in software products and also triggers some R&D; projects in Shanghai even China. To meet this trend, we assigned enough space for this topic with a very comprehensive collection. Hope it would be a valuable reference for both developers and application users.
      Product Line Engineering is one of new approaches developed recently for increasing software reuse. Based on domain engineering, it can help enterprises to design a family of products, through component-based development, for much wider application scope. We give it a special recommendation, in view of its potential application to development of e-Enterprises. Via a proactive domain analysis, a common enterprise application framework can be identified for further reuse. It will help us to avoid repeated development from the scratch at low level and save development cost remarkably, an especially vital factor for China with so vast territory and large number of enterprises.
      Embedded Applications & Systems stands for a new large family of IT application occurred in recent years. This section discusses mainly some key issues, such as: embedded OS, Wireless applications, information appliance, system-on-chip (SoC), major technologies related, and the future trends of technology development, i.e. so-called "Ubiquitous & Pervasive Computing".
      Security is the topic concerned most right now in the design of open network systems. For this reason, we arrange a special section with extensive collection, including contents such as: Access Control & Authentication, Encryption, Security Standards & Protocols, Security Management , Intrusion Detection/Prevention, System Survivability, Protection Of Digital Contents, Privacy Issues, and other Security Resources
      Although Artificial Intelligence is not a really new technology, it has formed a rather wide spectrum after long time research and development. In consideration of contents integrity, we decided to collect them into this column. It will also help the concerned readers know latest development in AI area.
      The Technology Trends part collects related expectation on technology development from some experts and authoritative institutes. These will be a valuable reference for those readers who concern future technology development.
      The IT Resources section links many other IT resources website in the world for further retrieval.

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