In the retail industry, the largest annual exposition is usually the National Retail Federation Big Show that takes place every January in New York. Notwithstanding the enormous amount of recent retail store closings, the mood at this year’s just-concluded Big Show was buoyant. Mike Webster, Senior Vice President at Oracle said it straight out, “We’re optimistic on retail. Stores and physical experiences play a critical role in the value proposition.” Oracle is a paradigmatic exhibitor at the Big Show; the companies on display are primarily technology companies. They are there to promote every conceivable electronic solution to retailers’ problems and there are thousands of exhibitors from companies big and small. It’s not a simple matter for retailers to wade through all the possible technology solutions. As Michele Dupre, Group Vice President at Verizon Enterprise Solutions told me, “[retailers] have to pick the right technologies and implement fast to make themselves relevant. It’s incredibly complex.” Read more at Forbes.