Silicon Saturday

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A selection of some of the most intriguing tech stock ideas on the Web. The items presented do not represent the views of

TheStreet.com

; rather, the collection is offered as a service to our members who may be scanning the Web for stock-related information.

By Frank Barnako
Special to

TheStreet.com

Trusted Information Systems

Web Week

In front of every valuable database and corporate archive on a computer network should stand a firewall.

Trusted Information Systems

(

(TISX)

TISX) has been providing such electronic protection on the UNIX platform for years, and is now moving to enter the much larger market of users on the Windows NT platform with new security technology.

TIS is making its move in tandem with partners, including

Axent Technologies

(

(AXNT)

AXNT),

Computer Associates

(

(CA) - Get Report

CA) and

Hewlett-Packard

(

(HWP)

HWP). Todd Spangler, of the Internet trade magazine

Web Week

, says these deals are being done to help the company license its technology to other security vendors.

The strategy is a smart one, agrees

Hambrecht & Quist

analyst Eric Zimits. Zimits tells the magazine, "The largest threat for any firewall vendor is the possibility of a company that's not a traditional firewall vendor entering the market."

Making deals ahead of market introduction gives Trusted Information Systems some insulation and confidence. The company has not been profitable since 1995, and its stock price is stalled around 12, a dollar less than its October 1996 IPO price. Martin Pyykkonen, a

Furman Selz

analyst, told

Web Week

: "Some days the market likes firewalls, and some days it doesn't."

More information can be found at

http://www.webweek.com/current/industry/19970804-vendor.html

.

Avoid Computer Hardware

Ben Zacks

Ben Zacks watches company financial reports for a living. Subscribers to his

Zacks Investment Research

see the fruits of his efforts in various printed and online publications. Looking at corporate results for the second quarter, Zacks says they couldn't have been better. In his own universe of 6,000 companies, he's found analysts have revised upward their earnings estimates for 53% of the companies.

Industries showing unexpected strength include aerospace, auto and truck parts, computers and software. But Zacks is not convinced. In his online column, he warns investors away from technology hardware manufacturers, especially in the PC and networking area. "Fully valued" is how Zacks sees many of these companies, believing that price cuts have put serious pressure on margins.

More worrisome is the outlook for hardware purchases because of the Year 2000 problem. The problems converting legacy software are going to be "immense," and "are going to eat up the largest share of corporate EDP and technology budgets, leaving new hardware purchases questionable." But this also brings opportunities, he says, for computer service companies that he finds attractive, including

EDS

(

(EDS)

EDS),

Computer Associates

(

(CA) - Get Report

CA) and

Unisys

(

(UIS) - Get Report

UIS).

More information can be found at

http://www.tfc.com/syndication/current.cgi?tfc+zacks

.

WorldCom

TechWeb

Telecommunications company

WorldCom

(

(WCOM)

WCOM) seems to have something in common with

Rodney Dangerfield

: no respect. The company reported earnings for the second quarter last week. The stock price blipped up a fraction for a few days, then this week fell.

But

Bay Isle Financial

money manager Bill Schaff is not losing his enthusiasm for WorldCom, which is also the fourth-largest long-distance telephone company in the U.S. "Looks like really good results to me, though the market doesn't seem to agree," he wrote in his weekly online column. His analysis finds revenue year-on-year up 33% and operating income tripled. Short-term revenue rose 6% from the first quarter while operating expenses climbed only 1.4%. To Schaff, it looks like the "strategy is working." Schaff manages a mutual fund based on the trade magazine

InformationWeek

100 index.

More information can be found at

http://www.techweb.com/investor/mavens/modelp/modelp.html

.

Ultradata Systems

Dick Davis Digest

Ultradata Systems

(

(ULTR) - Get Report

ULTR) manufactures and markets a line of hand-held data retrieval devices. The primary products are hand-held computers, full of travel information.

For instance, the RV Navigator product is loaded with a database of RV campgrounds and repair shops. A Home and Garden model has thousands of pages of gardening, cleaning and home remedy tips. In the works is the Personal Onboard Information System, an item that will integrate a vehicle information system with global positioning satellites.

Savvy Investor

newsletter editor Vance Howard thinks the company is making some good moves with the new product, as well as offering private-label versions of its products through

Sears

(

(S) - Get Report

S).

More information can be found at

http://www.techweb.com:80/investor/roundup/excerpts/round3.html

.