Every industry that is dependent on information technology (IT) is in the midst of a major transition brought about by the combination of four primary forces. These four forces make up the 3rd Platform for business applications, succeeding client/server (2nd Platform) and mainframes (1st Platform). The 3rd Platform takes applications beyond systems of transaction to systems of decision management and to systems of relationship. Enabled by the 3rd Platform, the pace of business has never been greater and the rate of change has never been higher. As a result, there is a need for a new generation of enterprise applications that can take full advantage of that new platform.