Gartner Group's Hype Cycle
The sequence of events experienced by an overly-hyped product or
- Technology trigger.
- A breakthrough, public demonstration, product launch or other event
that generates significant press and industry interest.
- Peak of inflated expectations.
- A phase of overenthusiasm and unrealistic projections during which a
flurry of publicized activity by technology leaders results in some successes
but more failures as the technology is pushed to its limits. The only
enterprises making money at this stage are conference organizers and magazine
- Trough of disillusionment.
- The point at which the technology becomes unfashionable and the press
abandons the topic, because the technology did not live up to its overinflated
- Slope of enlightenment.
- Focused experimentation and solid hard work by an increasingly
diverse range of organizations lead to a true understanding of the technology's
applicability, risks and benefits. Commercial off-the-shelf methodologies and
tools become available to ease the development process.
- Plateau of productivity.
- The real-world benefits of the technology are demonstrated and
accepted. Tools and methodologies are increasingly stable as they enter their
second and third generation. The final height of the plateau varies according
to whether the technology is broadly applicable or only benefits a niche
The "hype cycle" phrase emerged from the fertile mind of Gartner Group
analyst, Jackie Fenn, who wrote a report titled The Microsoft System
Software Hype Cycle Strikes Again in July, 1995. (Old technology hands will
immediately guess the overly-hyped product that inspired the report
...back to Tim McKenna's