Emerging Tech Hype Cycle for 2008

I was just reading about 2008 emerging technology hype cycle published by Gartner. According to Gartner new technologies progress through five distinct stages (1) Technology trigger, (2) peak of inflated expectations, (3) trough of disillusionment, (4) slope of enlightenment, and (5) plateau of productivity. And each technology moves through these stages at it’s own pace. Some on a 2-5 year cycle for example while others are on a much longer cycle of 5-10 years. I just located the 2006 curve here and I’m searching for as many as I can find. Since I began my career in technology back in 1980 I’ve been well aware of this curve. But this is the first time I’ve seen it published and documented. I can’t think of a single new technology over the past 28 years that hasn’t gone through these stages…except for the ones that flopped or became obsolete before reaching stage 5. In my early years I would be so disapointed whenever an exciting new technology like artifical intelliegnce for example would enter stage (3) trough of disillusionment. But after a while I realized this stage is inevidable after so much hype is piled on by industry media and consultants who are trying to capitalize on the initial excitement in order to rake in the big bucks while business leaders struggle to understand and are afraid of being left behind. As these same business leaders begin to realize the technology can’t possibly deliver the sky high results that were promised…they start a backlash against the technology that always appears very negative. Articles appear with quotes from prominent corporate leaders telling war stories of how the technology failed to deliver. Over time the story fades and all of the get rich quick consultants and vendors move on to the next new over hyped technology. Meanwhile the people who are left are the ones who believed in the technology all along recognizing it’s potential and understanding it’s limitations. They began to advance it’s capabilities and utilize it to solve problems and thus begin the long slow climb back up out of the trough to real value on the plateau of productivity where most decent technologies eventually end up.

Amazon Web Services keeps on growing with Elastic Block Storage

Amazon just released a major enhancement to their EC2 (Elastic Cloud Computing) platform with the addition of Elastic Block Storage which provides a persistent storage volume (think virtual hard drives) for use with Amazon EC2 instances. Previously one big downside to using AWS/EC2 for application hosting was lack of permanent dynamic storage capable of hosting a mysql database for example. So if your app needed a backend database you had to host that database someplace else (outside the Amazon cloud). And because they’re virtual you can clone them, snapshot them and benefit from automatic replication.

Eric Hammond has already written an article giving step-by-step on how to setup a mysql database on EBS.

New web 2.0 site helps match Inventors with Retailers

“Anything that won’t sell, I don’t want to invent. Its sale is proof of utility, and utility is success.” …Thomas Edison

Edison Nation is a new website designed to match inventors with major retailers. Based on the PBS television series Everyday Edisons the new site packed with web 2.0 features is geared to helping inventors take a product from idea to store shelves.

Companies like Home Depot and Bed Bath & Beyond have signed up to evaluate submissions

If a retailer selects an idea, the inventor will receive $2500 up front and annual payments based on success of commercialization.

This is particularly relevant to inventors who are located in Georgia, which according to a recent study by researchers at Georgia Tech, the state currently has no organization or entity that focuses on the needs of independent inventors. Based on the top needs of Georgia inventors as identified in the study, Edison Nation is a much needed resource for Georgia’s community of inventors.

Edison Nation is free to join but the paid membership of $9.95 a month provides extra benefits including being able to search the database for ideas that have already been submitted. It also costs $25 to submit each idea.

New Google Search Analysis Service

Google just released a new service called Google Insights for Search. Similar to its popular Google Trends this new service is geared towards advertisers. It’s a tool to track a particular search term’s popularity across the Web and geographic regions of the world. Using this service you can track how much a term has been googled over time, show where it’s most popular on a map, and even see the top “related” and “rising” searches for the term are. And you can filter results by geographic region or time frame. If you are into meme tracking or analysis then Insights for Search is the perfect tool for you to use.