Utkarsh Sengar

Software, Growth @upwork, ex-@OpenTable, @ebay, @RedLaserApp, build side projects at thearea42.com, life long learner, always up to something, 🚀

I came across this interesting white paper — Hype Cycle of Emerging Technologies, 2009 published by Gartner Inc. This paper describes the emerging technology trends and how are these technologies performing in the year 2009. The hype cycle is divided into 5 phases based on their conception and market adoption.

So, what is so interesting about a Hype Cycle?! Here is how wikipedia describes it:

A hype cycle is a graphic representation of the maturity, adoption and business application of specific technologies. The term was coined by Gartner, an analyst/research house based in the United States that provides opinions, advice and data on the global information technology industry.

They come up with many Hype cycles on various markets every year (which are not free of course $$, that’s how they make money!).

The most interesting thing I came across is at the peak of the hype cycle is the most talked about topic these days, cloud computing. According to Garther, cloud computing is the most hyped technology of year 2009.

The above graph is divided into 5 phases;

  1. Technology Trigger— Now, this is the phase when a new technology evolves and has a chance of becoming one of the main stream technologies of the future. Some of the technology triggers of 2009 according to Gartner are — 3D flat panel displays, Quantum computing and Human Augmentation. I personally think these stuff will take a very long time to develop, especially Human Augmentation!

:-) 2. Peak of inflated expectation: Now here comes the interesting part! The 2nd phase has those technologies which are over hyped and have unrealistic expectations! On top of this peak is Cloud Computing and E-book readers! I wonder what Amazon has to say about that, since they are one of the biggest players of the “cloud” and also of the e-book readers, the Kindle! Can’t help mentioning the “cloud” OS — Google Chrome OS and Jolicloud.

  1. Trough of Disillusionment: This phase covers those technologies which failed to live up to their expectations! One of the biggest looser which I see here is RFID! But RFID still has a long way to go. Gartner think RFID is on a slow and steady growth and it might catch up other technologies in the next phase, the Slope of Enlightenment in 5–10 years.

  2. Slope of Enlightenment: This phase covers one of the most promising technologies of tomorrow which have become a part of our lives but we haven’t actually started to tap its potential. Biggest example is Twitter! Some of the technologies in this phase are Web 2.0 (Its every where!), social network analysis (FaceBook plans to do that), over the air mobile phone system (Jack Dorsey is doing that). From where I see, these technologies have really gained some solid ground and have a promising future ahead!

  3. Plateau of Productivity: Well, the final phase consists of those technologies which are already proven to be a breakthrough in technology and is broadly accepted by various markets. The year 2009 does not have any technologies in the 5th phase, though speech recognition is inching towards the 5th phase. Last year, web services was in this category and presently in the year 2009, virtually all the major websites run some kind of web services and the enterprise systems depend heavily on web services!