Why do I care? Well, as a technology consultant, I make recommendations to my clients. If my opinions and recommendations are inconsistent with what other "experts" think, I want to know what the facts are that lead us to our separate conclusions. In the case of the Radicati research, I find myself disagreeing with many points; I owe it to myself, to my clients, and to my profession, to explore this further.
Microsoft promotes Sara's research on their web site, so I can assume that it represents a position that they believe (or would like to believe) will be true. I expect that IBM will respond publicly soon with their thoughts. (Ed?)
I'm really curious to see if a sharp industry blogger or editor will decide to investigate the facts presented in Sara and Michael's papers. It would be great to see someone like Mary Jo Foley at Microsoft-Watch or Barb Darrow, industry Editor for CRN, or someone from eWeek do an investigative write-up on this. Who knows, perhaps Robert Scoble, Microsoft's chief blogger, would care to offer another perspective.
Here are three questions I would like to know the answers to:
1. Research papers have authors. Who is the actual author of the report? If the author is simply " The Radicati Group," is it fair to say that the report accurately represents the expert opinion of Dr. Radicati and all of the research analysts that work for The Radicati Group as an organization?
2. Research costs money. Someone paid for it. Who was it? Was this research funded in-house, by The Radicati Group, by any of the vendors mentioned in the report, or by a third party? As a consultant, consumer, and distributor of information, I do not think that it is unreasonable for me to ask this question.
3. Research papers require research. What were the sources of information used and how did they lead to the conclusions presented in the research paper? Would it be possible to see a list of citations of the sources consulted and for the figures and graphs presented?
I publicly solicit answers to these questions from anyone who may have been involved in the production of this particular market analysis, who may be able to shed some light on my questions.
Dr. Radicati, if you would like to respond directly, and I hope that you will, you may reach me at my email (above) or at my office, 661-242-8410 x101. I look forward to hearing from you. I promise to post any written response from you in its entirety.