The hype cycle concept has been used by IT consulting company Gartner since 1995 to highlight the common pattern of “overenthusiasm, disillusionment and eventual realism that accompanies each new technology and innovation.” While Gartner’s hype cycles represent one company’s opinions, the underlying concept seems right and it is always interesting to see where they place the current crop of computing related technologies.
Here is their 2011 hype cycle for emerging technologies
and some comments from the accompanying press release.
“Themes from this year’s Emerging Technologies Hype Cycle include ongoing interest and activity in social media, cloud computing and mobile,” Ms. Fenn said. “On the social media side, social analytics, activity streams and a new entry for group buying are close to the peak, showing that the era of sky-high valuations for Web 2.0 startups is not yet over. Private cloud computing has taken over from more-general cloud computing at the top of the peak, while cloud/Web platforms have fallen toward the Trough of Disillusionment since 2010. Mobile technologies continue to be part of most of our clients’ short- and long-range plans and are present on this Hype Cycle in the form of media tablets, NFC payments, quick response (QR)/color codes, mobile application stores and location-aware applications.
Transformational technologies that will hit the mainstream in less than five years include highly visible areas, such as media tablets and cloud computing, as well as some that are more IT-specific, such as in-memory database management systems, big data, and extreme information processing and management. In the long term, beyond the five-year horizon, 3D printing, context-enriched services, the “Internet of Things” (called the “real-world Web” in earlier Gartner research), Internet TV and natural language question answering will be major technology forces. Looking more than 10 years out, 3D bioprinting, human augmentation, mobile robots and quantum computing will also drive transformational change in the potential of IT.”
You can get a copy of the Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies Summary Report by giving your contact information, but the full report on this or any of the other 26 topical hype cycle reports will cost you money.