Investors are always hunting for the next big stock -- the dream stock whose price increases several times over when the market finally discovers it. It's easy to look back and discover the 10 best stocks of the past decade. But I'm more interested in the tools that can help me evaluate tomorrow's greatest companies.

Motley Fool CAPS offers a variety of resources to aid Fools in finding tomorrow's leaders. Our 140,000-member community is full of investors helping each other beat the market.

We'll enlist CAPS to screen for technology companies, then get the story behind some of its more highly rated stocks. CAPS' nifty screener will help us find stocks with:

  • A market cap of at least $100 million.
  • A three-year revenue growth rate of at least 25%.
  • A price-to-earnings ratio of less than 25.

Then we'll tap the collective intelligence of our CAPS members to see whether these companies present real opportunities -- or whether the numbers fail to tell the true story.

Opinions with the numbers
Below is a sample of stocks our screen returned. You can run this screen yourself -- remember, though, that your results may differ from ours as the market changes.

Company

Revenue Growth Rate, Past 3 Years

CAPS Rating
(out of 5)

Jinpan (NASDAQ:JST)

30.4%

*****

Synaptics (NASDAQ:SYNA)

36.7%

****

Brocade Communications Systems (NASDAQ:BRCD)

32%

****

Data and star rankings from CAPS as of Sept. 11.

Jinpan International
Jinpan manufactures transformers for power distribution, catering to the Chinese market. The company has been a favorite of CAPS members; many consider the company well-positioned to meet the growing demand for Chinese energy infrastructure in the coming years. There's plenty of room for growth -- the firm is just a fraction of the size of other industry players such as ABB (NYSE:ABB) or General Electric.

Though Jinpan reported a 44% jump in second-quarter earnings, shares took a hit when it gave a less-than-robust outlook for the remainder of the year. In response, CAPS members gladly grabbed an opportunity to pick up some shares at a multiple of less than 10 times earnings. More than 97% of the 839 CAPS members rating Jinpan expect it to outperform the market.      

Synaptics
Despite a lower outlook that slammed shares of Synaptics late in July, many CAPS members like the long-term potential for the touch interface technology designer. It's already a leader in the touchscreen technology used in laptops, monitors, and smartphones such as Research In Motion's Blackberry Storm and the Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) G1. The use of Synaptics' technology is expanding, particularly in mobile phones, and it's expected to have strong market penetration in the years ahead as more handset makers adopt advanced touch interfaces for products. Synaptics also sits on a healthy cash balance, and it's generated positive free cash flow over the past 12 months. In CAPS, 95% of the 713 members rating Synaptics see it outperforming the broader market. 

Brocade
Brocade has been strengthening its relationships with companies like IBM and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) to gain a better stronghold on the networking market. Recently, it expanded an existing deal with Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) to push its networking and storage gear through Dell's sales channels. Brocade also plans to work with the company on new data-center technology. Wall Street has taken notice of the improved prospects; shares have already marked big gains this year, and some analysts think there's more potential upside. As heavyweights like Cisco and Dell move beyond their core business in hopes of raiding each other's nests, many observers see an excellent opportunity for Brocade to step in and gain business At this point, nearly 94% of the 574 CAPS members rating Brocade are bullish.

Let 140,000 members be the jury
The collective wisdom of a huge pool of investors can help give context to a page of numbers from a stock screen -- but individual investors are still the best judges. Fools should always perform their own due diligence.

And it's easy to chime in with your own opinion: If you agree that these companies present dream opportunities -- or see more of a nightmare instead -- simply add your comment to the article in the box below.

The Motley Fool Stock Advisor service looks for companies with strong management poised to beat the market over the long haul. To see all the stocks that have helped Tom and David Gardner beat the market by 47 points on average, take a free 30-day trial.

Fool contributor Dave Mock dreams of stocks and sugarplum fairies, but not together. He owns no shares of companies mentioned here. Google is a Rule Breakers pick. Dell is an Inside Value recommendation. ABB is a Global Gains selection. Jinpan International is a Hidden Gems pick. The Fool's disclosure policy screens the good, the bad and the ugly.