Carmi Levy, a technology analyst with Info-Tech Research Group Inc. in London, Ont., said the demand for iPod-like gadgets and online services has always been there, but a major bottleneck was bandwidth. Without high-speed Internet connections in most homes, people weren't able to download music or video or easily access services like Google Maps.
"In the late 1990s there was a lot of services that were promised that would revolutionize the way we live, but the bandwidth wasn't there," he said, adding that the ubiquity of high-speed and wireless technologies has changed the game. "Now we can run sophisticated applications on the Internet because we have the pipes."
Your turn: The thesis of Mr. Hamilton's piece explores whether or not we're into another tech boom. Are we? Could a return to the zaniness of the late '90s (think eyeballs and clickthroughs and a total disregard for simple things like profit) be upon us?