In our cover story this month, writer Bob Andelman uses an excellent analogy when talking about whether direct sales on the Web will eventually affect companies' incentives. "Not long ago, a generation of architects scoffed at the notion that their entire industry would shift from pencils and slide rules to CAD software," he says. "They were still standing on the tracks staring into the oncoming headlights when the e-railroad ran over them." The bullet train is heading this way. Take ...

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