I'll be traveling to Richmond, VA, tomorrow to visit PDI's facilities there and then next month to an editor's event to visit APC's facilities in Rhode Island. I expect to learn a lot about the innovations that these companies plan to bring to market. These trips help me understand and anticipate the new technologies being introduced into the mission critical market. Over the years, I have visited many vendors, a practice I enjoyed as editor of other BNP Media publications and even before that.

In addition, manufacturers and others often issue news under embargo so that publications can meet deadline with these announcements. Just a few minutes ago, I interviewed two executives about a cooling technology that they plan to announce in late June. I can spend the next month learning more about the technology so that Mission Critical can be a credible source of information about this announcement.

These meetings and phone calls are not remarkable; what's remarkable is the sheer number of companies with new products under development, practically ready for announcement.

Many of these products, of course, will not find widespread acceptance. Some may fail to find an early adopter audience. Reasons for these failures will vary: undercapitalization, poor value proposition, bad marketing, poor manufacturing, failure to build sales and distribution channels. The list is endless.

Still I am reassured that even in this economy new vendors are emerging to challenge more familiar names and R&D investments of previous years are paying off in new products.

Vendors should be aware that there is a market for many of these products, but that more education is needed. Mission Critical strives to be one of the key avenues for readers who want to know more. Still more needs to be done. We learn every day that many of our readers are overwhelmed by the challenges they face at work and have little time to seek out new solutions.

We've designed a webinar program and our blogs to help these readers cope and also want to use our enewsletter and magazine to provide useful information to readers of all degrees of sophistication.