Some new opportunities will expose you to new problems, too. Conversely, some clouds truly do have a silver lining. Memory and portable consumer electronics maven Micron Technology (NYSE:MU) just gave us a fine example of both sides of that coin.

Let's start with the bad news. The just-reported second quarter is a seasonally slow period for the company, as the gangbusters back-to-school and major holiday seasons are both far, far away on the calendar.

So when Micron stepped out of its traditional memory business and into consumer electronics, the company entered a promising new market where competitors like SanDisk (NASDAQ:SNDK) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) are doing very well. It's a high-growth opportunity, and brings the brand into every Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) and Target (NYSE:TGT) store in America.

But it made the seasonality worse. The kids want music players for Christmas.

As if that wasn't enough, there's a well-documented lack of demand for high-end cell phones right now, which hurts sales of flash memory and digital camera sensor chips, both of which are parts of Micron's core portfolio. It might not add up to a perfect storm, but it does add up to a pretty decent one, and we're unlikely to see a worse quarter out of Micron -- or its main competitors -- anytime soon.

Which leads me to the good news. In the attendant conference call, management said things are looking up. For one thing, demand is picking up for computers that can run the new Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Vista operating system, which drives memory sales on its own. For another, the recent glut of flash memory supply has driven down prices very far, which is normally a bad thing for memory makers. But this has created whole new markets as the memory becomes affordable enough for new, larger-scale uses.

So when SMART Modular Technologies (NASDAQ:SMOD), among others, presents flash-based and ultra-fast "disk" drives, there's Micron memory inside some of them. And video-enabled portable media players need more storage than pure music devices -- again, here's your supplier.

It's a good development for other memory makers, too, of course. However, memory chips are Micron's bread and butter, while the other major players, like Toshiba and Samsung, have, let's say, a few other balls in the air.

In short, we're probably looking at the bottom of this cycle for Micron, and the company is well-positioned to benefit from the expected upswing. It's certainly on my value-play watch list now.

Further Foolishness:

Microsoft and Wal-Mart are pretty good values, too. In fact, both are official Motley Fool Inside Value selections. Get the full scoop with a free 30-day trial subscription.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here, but he buys all his groceries at Target. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like, and Foolish disclosure is always memorable.