This term was used in the late 1990's to suggest that globalization and/or innovations in information technology had changed the way that the world economy works. Conjectures included changes in productivity, the inflation-unemployment tradeoff, the business cycle, and the valuation of enterprises.
Sectors of the economy that are knowledge/human-capital-based with the understanding the technology ultimately derives from human ingenuity. While human capital is a prime driver in the information technology and telecommunications sectors, it also has been responsible for significant improvements in productivity in more traditional industries such as automobiles, aircraft and agriculture.
Companies mostly in Internet, technology, telecommunications and other "new" businesses heavily reliant on technical innovation and intellectual capital. Until recently these businesses were thought by many to be immune from cyclical fluctuations. The stock "bubble" of the late Nineties-and its deflation in 2000-developed in this arena of industry.