I can see what they mean - a lot of the tech industry seems to be concentrating on the same technological idea - e-commerce. Making e-commerce systems/websites isn't really a challenge anymore - it's pretty much a plug & play market.
So? You could say pretty much the same thing about the word processor market, the operating system market or the spreadsheet market, and yet they've been going for years and show no sign of dying. Just because the initial boom period is over why should the industry need to turn to something else?
Whilst I'm sure that there will be new ideas coming up, I don't think that you're correct in assuming there needs to be a "next big thing", or that there needs to be. In fact, if the industry started jumping on the bandwagon every five years the way they did with e-commerce, all we'd have is a lot of half-baked, experimental systems without the reliability and usability that comes from having years of design experiance behind them.
Maybe XML will take off, maybe not, but it's just a method of communicating data between systems, not anything in itself. It remains to be seen whether it will be of any use yet.
You're doomed, I'm doomed, we're all doomed for ice cream. - Bob Aboey