In a recent study, Parks Associates, a research firm based in Dallas, Texas, found that the total end-user market value for data and entertainment networks (including integrated wiring systems) is projected to follow this path:

2000—$0.7 billion

2001—$1.3 billion

2002—$2.4 billion

2003—$3.3 billion

2004—$4.5 billion

What these figures say is that people will probably be investing in home networking at an ever-increasing rate. Lab research and development, market research, product sales and marketing, and, most important, public uptake will expand through the next five years—and beyond.

These growth predictions have encouraged many large companies to collaborate in projects that promote the convergence between personal computers, ...

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