Actual vs. predicted usefulness

Iddo: Following an earlier post on the hype cycle of genomic and other technologies, Leighton Pritchard has suggested producing a more elaborate phase diagram of predicted vs. actual usefulness of, uh, stuff. We kicked around the idea back and forth over the weekend, and here’s the result. Over to Leighton, who gets the lion’s share of the credit here…

Leighton: (clears throat) Iddo’s earlier post on the Hype Cycle got us both thinking about things that have exceeded, or failed to live up to initial expectations –  and it sort of expanded from there.  So, after a weekend of emails, what we have here is a phase diagram of actual usefulness against expected usefulness of, as Iddo says, stuff.  The phases can be broadly described by the kind of thing your Prof. might say when they first come across it. (Iddo: hey I’m the prof in my lab, and I resent that!)  It turns out some things were just so hyped or are so bloody useful that they don’t even fit on the axes.  We couldn’t cover everything (we could easily have got the 11 Doctors, the Star Wars and Star Trek films in there), and it’s not exactly a sober, dispassionate judgement.

We’ve obviously tried to be as non-libellous as possible (which is a serious issue for free speech and science in the UK) and, on that note, this was a joint effort in a very real, and legally binding sense.  As with the Hype Cycle, all the opinions you might infer (imaginary or real) are personal and don’t represent our employers, family or friends (imaginary or real).  Where we’ve had to distort the truth in an attempt to be funny, we’ve merrily done so.  I don’t reckon we’ll be winning many prizes over at the Junk Charts blog either.

I extend my thanks to Iddo for the opportunity to crack wise in front of the hard-won readership of Byte Size Biology.  If any of you get a chuckle out of it, that’ll do for me.

Click for full size

Share and Enjoy:
  • Fark
  • Digg
  • Technorati
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • FriendFeed
  • PDF
  • email
  • Print
  • Google Bookmarks

2 Responses to “Actual vs. predicted usefulness”

  1. Moreno says:

    This is the funniest thing I’ve seen in a while!! 😀

  2. Manuel says:

    brilliant, Iddo.