Many chipmakers have experienced whiplash over the past few years. Demand for semiconductors soared during the pandemic, as business closures accelerated digital transformation projects and stimulus checks left consumers flush with cash. But demand has now cratered in response to high inflation and economic uncertainty, as businesses and consumers have pulled back on discretionary purchases.

Not surprisingly, Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA) has suffered the consequences of that boom-and-bust cycle. Third-quarter revenue dropped 17% to $5.9 billion, and earnings fell 72% to $0.27 per diluted share, driven by particularly weak results in its gaming and professional visualizations segments. Worse yet, management expects revenue to fall more sharply in the fourth quarter.

As a result, Nvidia has seen its share price plunge as much as 66% this year, marking its worst sell-off in the last decade, and the stock currently sits 45% off its all-time high. On the bright side, that downturn has created a good buying opportunity for long-term investors.

Nvidia is a full-stack computing company

In 1999, Nvidia revolutionized the semiconductor industry with its invention of the graphics processing unit (GPU), a type of chip designed to handle billions or even trillions of calculations simultaneously. In other words, GPUs can process a lot of data very quickly, which makes them ideal for rendering graphics and accelerating complex data center applications like scientific computing, big data analytics, and artificial intelligence (AI).

Today, Nvidia holds more than 90% market share in workstation graphics and supercomputer accelerators, and its GPUs are synonymous with AI infrastructure, according to Forrester Research. Better yet, Nvidia has solidified its leadership in graphics and accelerated computing with subscription software and cloud services. In other words, Nvidia has evolved beyond hardware to become a "full-stack" computing company.

Nvidia AI Enterprise is a suite of software that helps customers build and deploy AI applications for predictive recommendations, video analytics, and drug discovery. It also addresses use cases like autonomous robots, self-driving cars, and intelligent avatars. Thanks to its full-stack AI platform, Nvidia has consistently set performance records at the MLPerf benchmarks, an objective biannual competition that measures the capabilities of AI hardware and software from different vendors.

Similarly, Nvidia Omniverse is a suite of software that helps creators build 3D objects, virtual worlds, and metaverse applications. It also functions as a physically accurate simulation engine capable of generating synthetic data, which can be used to train the AI models that power autonomous vehicles and machines. Thanks to its Omniverse platform, Nvidia took second place on Fast Company's list of the most innovative augmented reality and virtual reality companies in 2022.

The future is bright for Nvidia (and the stock is reasonably priced)

In a nutshell, Nvidia provides cutting-edge computing solutions that are shaping the future of multiple industries, and its products will only become more relevant over time. Its graphics platform already powers stunning visual effects in video games and films, and it will almost certainly be a cornerstone of virtual reality and the metaverse. Similarly, its AI platform already powers product recommendations in retail, intelligent avatars in customer service, and fraud prevention in finance, and it is on pace to revolutionize logistics, manufacturing, and transportation with autonomous robots and robotaxis.

With that in mind, Nvidia puts its addressable market at $1 trillion, leaving a long runway for growth. And with shares trading at 15.7 times sales, a small discount to its three-year average of 20.3 times sales, this must-own semiconductor growth stock is worth buying now.