Across the chasm

I’ve written before how I use the chasm model to explain my professional work of 1) seeing what is ready to cross the chasm by 2) staying connected to the innovators & being an early adopter so that 3) I can help mainstream organizations. It’s a graphic summary of my consulting practice. As you can see, I ignore the Laggards.
In the field of web social media for workplace performance, what technologies are the Innovators experimenting with?

Which ones are now being picked up by the Early Adopters (like me) and finally, which technologies and ideas are ready to cross the chasm to the Early Majority?

Innovators Early Adopters Crossing the Chasm
Technology Simulations Micro-blogs Blogs

Role-playing Social Networks Wikis

Waves Mobile Social Bookmarks
Ideas Emergent Learning PKM – PLN – PLE
Performance Support

Subject Matter Networks
Informal Learning

Group-centric Learning
Online Collaboration

Any other ideas, additions or comments?

3 Responses to “Across the chasm”

  1. Tom Haskins

    Hi Harold
    When I apply the “Discontinuity Tool” from the Chasm model, their analysis of the contrast between pain and gain rearranges your top row: “Simulations”. It seems to me the technologists/Innovators came up with RSS/Atom feeds, feed reader, and feed publisher apps. They experienced the most pain in getting those technologies to function reliably, yet gained the most impact over email, static web pages and threaded discussion lists. The visionaries/Early Adopter, like us, then saw the potential for sharing bookmarks, photos, writings, slides, videos etc. with subscribers to their/our feeds. Sharing was far less painful than developing RSS technologies, yet very disruptive to “ink on paper” paid subscription models (and almost as big an impact).

    The pragmatists/Early Majority/bowling alley adopted microblogging online, within Facebook, and/or on their cellphones. Tweeting uses feeds and sharing, but is far less painful than creating a blog post like you’ve done here with gorgeous graphics and the table insert that took lots of thought to produce. I’d argue that the gain from tweeting is less than from blogging, since it requires less thought and gets shorter comments. Yet Twitter has now gone from the bowling alley to the tornado, where the Late Majority has created a whirlwind of expanding uses. I can now follow twitter accounts from my local library, the sports anchor on the local TV news and the grocery store I frequent. I can update my LinkedIn account by putting #In in the subject line and send my newest delicious bookmark as a tweet with an automatic URL shortener. Microblogging is becoming commoditized, taken for granted and unquestionable where creating RSS feed apps and blogging remain arduous, big commitments and exceptional.

    • Harold Jarche

      Excellent points, Tom. I think you’re right that Twitter, or some other form of micro-blogging, may surpass blogging or other more arcane skills like hand-coded websites. My point is that blogging (at this point in time & based on my anecdotal evidence) is more acceptable in organizations than Twitter. However, I can see this could easily change. Thanks, once again, for your insight.

  2. Tom Haskins

    Your welcome!
    I suspect those organizations favoring blogging are later than Late Adopters, i.e. Laggards who are extremely risk adverse. Blogging has now been proven to not cause chaos in the form of lawsuits, lost customer accounts, embezzlement, etc. Twitter is unproven to those risk adverse executives. College IT Departments are also Laggards. They did not adopt on-campus email accounts until email was a has-been replaced by texting, tweets and Facebook updates.

    If those executives are really pragmatists/Early Majority, they would do more than accept blogging – they would use it to solve problems, increase teamwork, save expense, improve efficiency, etc.

    Thanks for writing such a thought-provoking post and follow-up comment!


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