Hype Cycle. Hmm, that really sounds geeky, so first of it let’s define it:
According to Word Spy, hype cycle is:
a sequence of events experienced by an overly-hyped product or technology, including a peak of unrealistic expectations followed by a valley of disappointment when those expectations aren’t met.
We meet it in a pretty similar way in the marketing’s product lifecycle.
Gartner’s hype cycle goes something like this: new technologies get overhyped in the beginning; then they go out of favor; eventually they’re adopted by the mainstream but by that time they’re no longer news.
A Hype Cycle is a graphic representation of the maturity, adoption and business application of specific technologies. It goes something like this:
Basically, hype cycle is only measuring the buzz as well as the adoption rate. It doesn’t necessarily correspond to the long-term utility – or success – of a phenomenon. That is a thing that only time will tell.
Check the graph (or click the thumb for full view, or simply download it as PDF) of the hype cycle plotted with every emerging technology (i.e. from corporate blogging to carbon nanotubes, and from quantum computing to speech recongnition).
Tablet PCs, Internet micro payments, passive RFID and video-conferencing are four technologies that are firmly stuck at the bottom of the “trough of disillusionment” while business process management suites, peer-to-peer VoIP and biometric identity documents find themselves right at the “peak of inflated expectations”.
The research firm has pegged Corporate Blogging and RSS as being two years away from mainstream adoption. For now, both are tumbling into Gartner’s Trough of Disillusionment (along with wikis and desktop search) as a result of too much media buzz. If you believe Gartner, Corporate Blogging is already sooo… last year (2004). The media rumble about Corporate Blogging is almost deafening by now. It’s not a “new” story anymore. Which is not to say that blogging isn’t still a “new” thing to many companies. So watch out bloggers the trough of disillusionment is right ahead. It will be an interesting subject to follow.