The Nasdaq composite index lost 132.30, or 3 percent, to 4,055.90, and the Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 3.87 to 1,500.59.
The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 100.52 to close at 11,287.08, led by Coca Cola, which rose $2.75 to $47.75.
The CNET tech index lost 77.59 to close at 3,157.96, with 75 of the 98 stocks in the index falling, 19 rising and four remaining unchanged.
Of the 18 sectors tracked, Internet services companies posted the sharpest decline, falling about 6 percent. Semiconductor equipment makers were the day's biggest gainers, although they gained a slim 0.33 percent.
Intel fell 38 cents to $130.75, and Microsoft continued a prolonged slide, losing $2.19 to close at $83.88. Microsoft acquired nearly a majority stake in Japan's second-largest cable television operator. Meanwhile, a First Allied analyst reiterated a "sell" rating on the software maker.
Global Crossing was the second most actively traded stock on the Nasdaq. The company sweetened its convertible preferred stock offering, and its stock rose 6 cents to $33 on volume of 46 million shares.
The initial offering of Bookham Technology, a British fiber-optics maker, was the biggest percentage gainer on the Nasdaq. The shares jumped $32.05, or 202 percent, to $47.88. Volume topped 10.5 million shares.
ViroPharma, a biotechnology company developing drugs that target viruses, was the Nasdaq's largest loser, falling $48.50, or nearly 68 percent, to $23.25 on heavy volume. The company said that clinical trials for meningitis and common cold remedies yielded disappointing results.
Among members of the CNET tech index, Motorola and Inktomi fell sharply.
Motorola shed $27.50, or 18 percent, to $123.50. The cell phone and chip manufacturer posted first-quarter earnings that slightly beat expectations, but the company also warned that second-quarter earnings will fall below analysts' estimates.
Shares of the Inktomi dropped $26.19, or 16 percent, to $135.06 as Exodus slipped $14.19, or 11 percent, to $112.25, and Broadcom fell $17.88 to $176.63.
Semiconductor equipment makers KLA-Tencor and Applied Materials posted gains after Morgan Stanley raised its price target on the stocks. KLA rose $2.56 to $86.38, and Applied Materials rose $1.25 to $104.63.
Those gains did not keep the Philadelphia semiconductor index out of the red. The index fell 35.95, or 3 percent, to 1,131.91, led by Motorola.
Shares of Advanced Mirco Devices, Rambus and Redback Networks may see heavy trading tomorrow, as all companies are scheduled to report earnings.