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Richard Todd has written about the intersection of finance and culture for The Atlantic Monthly, Preservation, and The New York Times. Todd brings social history, modern case studies, and his own experience to bear in his story about handshake deals (page 98), which reveals how dangerous it has become to close a deal in America without a written contract.

Alan Deutschman has written books about Napa Valley and Steve Jobs, and magazine articles for Fast Company, The New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, and Wired. On page 102 he writes about Microsoft's expensive campaign to stave off Linux and protect its position in what Deutschman calls the "schizophrenically contrasting market" of small businesses.

Frequent contributor Jim Melloan was a senior staff writer at Worth. In the 1970s, he belonged to the L5 Society, an organization dedicated to supporting the movement to build habitable colonies at L5, a point equidistant between Earth and the moon. So he was in his element as he reported (page 25) about entrepreneurs competing to build (we kid you not) an elevator into space.

Stacy Perman marveled at the time- management skills of the CEOs she interviewed for this issue, a group of entrepreneurs who have returned to college while running their businesses (page 57). "They conduct business everywhere," she says, "but their clients don't realize they're back to classes and track practice." Perman has been a staff writer at Time and Business 2.0, and has also written for The Wall Street Journal and Los Angeles magazine. Prentice Hall will publish her nonfiction book Spies, Inc. in 2004.