texasmonthly.com: Is this story a reaction to all the bad press Dell has been getting lately?
S. C. Gwynne: Dell has been getting nothing but bad press for the past year or so, most of which suggested that the company was losing its edge. Dell was embattled and obviously trying to figure out its own future. So it seemed to me and to editor Evan Smith like a good time to take a larger look at the company.
texasmonthly.com: You traveled to China for this story. What was that experience like?
SG: It really changed the way I looked at Dell, which these days is booming overseas in ways reminiscent of the U.S. market in the nineties. The big question about Dell is, Can the company keep expanding at a double-digit pace? In China you see a big part of the future of the computer industry and the answer, it seems to me, is yes. If you’re going to argue that Dell’s growth phase is over, you also have to argue that it does not have much of a future in China or India. In China it was obvious to me that Dell’s model