Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told the Microsoft TechEd 2005 conference of the company's vision of a "New World of Work" for information workers, with a focus on information access, business processes, and collaboration.

Microsoft's job in this paradigm is to provide developers and IT personnel with the tools they need to drive business success, Ballmer said. "It's a world in which the information worker, the employee in each of the companies that you serve, is at the centre," Ballmer said.

Ballmer cited security as a major concern. "We have made security job 1 over the last three or four years," he said. To this end, Microsoft plans to deliver secure mobile messaging via a combination of Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 2 and the Messaging and Security Feature Pack for Windows Mobile 5.0. Organizations will be able to push email and information in Outlook from Exchange Server to Windows Mobile devices.

Ballmer touched on other plans, including delivery of SDM (System Definition Model), a modelling language to express knowledge across the application lifecycle in Visual Studio 2005 Team System.

With its lifecycle tools, Microsoft is taking a run at competitor Rational. "This is a year where I say, 'Watch out, Rational,' because I think we have some big breakthroughs," Ballmer said.

Microsoft is also developing an RFID technology infrastructure built on top of the company's .Net Framework software platform.