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I think Amazon is the preeminent pioneer in building a new way of doing commerce: personalized, database-driven commerce, where the big value is not in the purchase fulfillment, but in knowing as much about a customer base of ten or twenty million people as a corner store used to know about a customer base of a few hundred. In today's mass-merchandising world, that's largely gone; Amazon is trying to use computer technology to re-establish it.
The issues involved are sufficiently important that courses are now moving out of the philosophy departments and into mainstream computer science. And they affect everyone. Many of the students attracted to these courses are not technology majors, and many of the topics we discuss relate to ethical challenges that transcend the computer world.