Gartner’s Content Management Hype Cycle helps readers select technologies like a manufacturing information system that will most benefit their organizations, whereas Magic Quadrant helps readers choose the best vendors for predetermined technologies like a manufacturing information system.
In fact, it seems that the Hype Cycle, at least from Gartner’s strategic position, emerged as their readership’s stepping stone to Magic Quadrant.
The Hype Cycle traces the stages of technology, as it evolves independent of vendor consideration from birth to maturity, and many IT professionals use the Hype Cycle to make decisions regarding which technologies to purchase for their organizations.
Additionally, Gartner says the Hype Cycle “reflects the content management market’s emphasis on pursuing innovation and flexibility, while continuing to meet the demand for the governance of systems of record.”
The report posits that by repurposing old technologies in tandem with new technologies, it is possible to meld these in both theory and practice to re-create an organization’s means of conducting and regulating business.
Main Points from the Hype Cycle
Gartner’s Hype Cycle helps organizations discern a technology’s market hype from the technology’s actual capacity and functionality—clarifying any discrepancy between the two for prospective buyers of these technologies.
Additionally, the Hype Cycle analyzes which technologies within content management will deteriorate, stagnate, or grow over time, including the capacity for these technologies to solve prevalent, contemporary organizational issues.
In explication of the Hype Cycle, there are two diagram axes illustrating the main points of the cycle in its entirety: expectations as the Y axis and time as the X axis. The X axis of time entails the following from left to right: 1. Technology Trigger, 2. Peak of Inflated Expectations, 3. Trough of Disillusionment, 4. Slope of Enlightenment, and 5. Plateau of Productivity. Each of these phases of the Hype Cycle are explained below:
- Technology Trigger: Where a technology experiences a breakthrough
- Peak of Inflated Expectations: Characterized by overenthusiasm for a new technology
- Trough of Disillusionment: Characterized by the press and media abandoning coverage of the technology
- Slope of Enlightenment: Where end users begin to understand the applicability and usefulness of the technology
- Plateau of Productivity: Where a technology is adopted in mass and well understood.
Presently, manufacturing information system is in The Slope of Enlightenment phase—freeing up room for organizations to derive short-term competitive advantage while stimulating demand for the technology as a long-term competitive necessity.
Limitations of the Hype Cycle
In relation to the manufacturing information system, including software and analyses of other enterprise technologies, Gartner’s Hype Cycle has been met with criticisms as myriad as they are specific.
For instance, Gartner provides no data to justify each specific stage of the cycle, nor are the stages of the Hype Cycle rooted in objective criteria, for they rely on subjective determinants such as disillusionment, enlightenment, and expectations.
Additionally, for readers using the graphic to purchase technology, these determinants are confusing. Technology buyers do not want ineffective solutions, but this does not mean they should avoid options in the Trough of Disillusionment category.
Additionally, the mechanisms that shift technologies through each phase of the cycle remain stated.
Aranda, Jorge (October 22, 2006). “Cheap shots at the Gartner Hype Curve”. Retrieved 2013-12-16.