Mr. Market is a shortsighted fellow at best. When he's looking at technology businesses, they often move too fast for him to see them for what they really are. As a result, he tends to hand out some unbelievable discounts on high-quality, high-tech stocks when the companies do anything unexpected.

Right now, these four brilliant businesses stand out in a crowded pack:

6-month Price Change

Trailing P/E Ratio

Projected 5-year Earnings Growth

Dell (Nasdaq: DELL)




Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD)




Autodesk (Nasdaq: ADSK)




VASCO Data Security International (Nasdaq: VDSI)




Data grabbed from Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's.

All of these companies are household names, at least within their respective industries, and they've all taken a severe beating in the market lately. Dell's turnaround effort is a well-known story, but the market doesn't give the Austin-based computer maker any credit for its considerable progress. And poor Autodesk is getting punished for thinking ahead, the way any self-respecting software business should.

AMD has just survived a lengthy price war against mighty Intel (Nasdaq: INTC), coming out bruised but still intact. Gross margin has improved from 28% last March to a much healthier 41% in the December quarter, and Intel has shown similar signs of putting the price-point conflict to rest. After several quarters without a competitive top-end chip, AMD is once again selling better chip sets and graphics solutions than the competition's, and 45-nanometer Opteron and Phenom chips aren't far behind. The days of red ink will soon be over.

A cut above the rest
But far and away the best value here lies in information security specialist Vasco. The Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation disappointed the Street a couple of weeks ago, when it reported an unexpected earnings dip. But Vasco didn't really miss out on any expected sales -- instead, it pushed a couple of deals out into the next quarter because its customers wanted it that way. Smoothing out earnings to meet estimates ain't Vasco's game, but excellent customer service is. Thus, the moves were made, inflating the current first quarter at the expense of the just-completed fourth.

Is that worthy of a 34% overnight price crash? I think not. Yet the stock is still lingering at those depressed levels. In other words, it's not too late to take advantage of this severe price-to-value mismatch.

For some perspective, remember that EMC (NYSE: EMC) bought Vasco's biggest rival RSA Security for $2.1 billion in 2006. The purchase price was more than 60 times that company's earnings at the time, but EMC hasn't complained or written down any goodwill from that deal. In fact, RSA is the fastest-growing division within EMC today, which only underscores the importance of information security -- and Vasco's true market worth.

Go forth and multiply your riches, Fool!
It doesn't take a whole lot of homework to realize that Mr. Market could use a fresh pair of spectacles. After all, these massive discounts make a spectacle out of the whole market, sometimes.

This is not an official "buy" recommendation. That said, these tempting tickers make a great starting point for further research, at the very least. None of these brilliant businesses deserve the beating they have taken in the past few months, and all of them could be great investments for the long run.

Further Foolishness:

Vasco and Dell are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks; Intel and Dell are Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund is an AMD shareholder but holds no other position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings if you like, and Foolish disclosure is always on the raw, bleeding edge of progress.