Nic Ferrier, the creator of elnode and the proprietor of Marmalade, gave an interesting Skills Matter talk on what the coming year will mean for Emacs. The video is about an hour and a quarter so plan appropriately.
The talk centers around Emacs becoming an important development environment in the same sense that Lisp Machines were. Ferrier begins with
elnode, a platform that allows you to write Web servers that run under Emacs. As examples, he demonstrates a simple Web Chat app and then moves on to discuss how he is rewriting Marmalade to run under
There's a lot good material and ideas in the talk. It's long but well worth your time. Ferrier shows how the dream of having a modern Lisp Machine development environment is closer than you may think.