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>>> Can we really consider things like computer manufacturers and dotcoms as 'technology stocks' any more? Computers are well established, much like typewriters were once standard fixtures in offices. But no-one considered typewriters to be 'technology'. Some "technology" stocks are nearly blue-chips now (apart from the recent volatility).

Well yeah, I think you have to consider hardware engineering and manufacturing as "technology stocks", if only because we haven't even begun to approach where hardware technology is going. We can go into a whole technical discussion, if you like, but for the moment I'll simply predict that processor speed =isn't= where the new and most important advances will be. Who really cares about a gig processor when the average user can't find ways to use up half those clock ticks?

Look for I/O speed, I/O intelligence, true hardware object orientation, and storage media to be driving the hardware world in the next 5-10 years, and consequently look for PCs to have the processing and management capabilities of "big iron" in 10. Probably less - I'm a pessimist, and think the whole thing will be slowed down by a global recession.

Software capabilities and sales are absolutely and completely bounded by hardware capabilities. What's keeping us today from truly computerized homes, for example, is not software - most of the tasks that the average homeowner can conceive of to computerize today are easily achievable in the software arena. But who wants to spend 30 or 40 grand on hardware to run it?

But we've seen incredible and dramatic inprovements in hardware technology in the last 10 years, and that's only the tip of the iceberg. When smart and fast I/O, and multipurpose shareable devices are available at enduser prices, then we'll see a software revolution that will blow your socks off.

Dotcoms are another issue, though. I've never understood people who classify issues like Amazon as "technology" stocks. They're retailers, plain and simple, with nothing more than a new display window. I gotta say, it gives me a giggle to see the moral equivalent of JC Penneys (except with no revenue) selling like it was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

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