This one-of-a-kind, class-tested textbook introduces the possibilities arising from the convergence of computing and communications technologies to students who don't have an information technology background. By combining the appropriate technical detail with illustrative examples, nontechnical issues, review sections, discussion items, and exercises, it empowers students to envision how networked computing applications con support individuals, groups, and organizations. Whether students are preparing for careers in business, information management, education, low, or public policy, no other book equips them with the broad understanding needed to effectively exploit these powerful technologies. Features. Thoroughly explains the use of networked computing in collaboration, information retrieval, education, business, and e-commerce. Covers a brood range of subjects including applications - their acquisition, the supporting technical infrastructures (architecture, security, databases, middleware, network, and communications), and performance - as well as important industry, economic, and policy issues. Provides supplementary materials via a companion Web site, links to other relevant Web sites, and additional resources for instructors.