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Why Go Global?

Taking the high road, I suppose we can say that Web applications need to go global in order to deal with humanity's vast diversity—truth be told, it's all about “the Benjamins” (money). If you've been paying attention to recent Internet statistics, you already know that much of the new growth in the Internet is occurring outside the United States. For instance, Forrester Research predicted $6.8 trillion in online commerce for 2004, with less than half of that, 47 percent to be exact, coming from the United States.

Table 23.1 summarizes some important Internet usage statistics and pretty much speaks for itself. And if these statistics aren't impressive enough, you might consider the “backyard globalization” that's occurring within the U.S. (and elsewhere). According to an article in the San Antonio Express-News, Hispanics in the U.S. now outnumber Canadians in Canada. That's 38.8 million people in a growing marketplace with an estimated $675 billion in annual purchasing power—certainly something to think about the next time you're designing a ColdFusion application.


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