A Smart Grid Chasm-Crossing Dilemma

How well does the “chasm-crossing” theory fit the power delivery industry?

Peter Manos | Aug 04, 2016

In the strategic marketing world, we often talk about motivating innovators and early adopters sufficiently to catalyze a “crossing of the chasm.”

The concept can be viewed in terms of a product adoption model that breaks up markets into customer segments, as shown below:

It is often assumed that this model, promoted by Geoffrey Moore in Crossing the Chasm, fits our industry’s smart grid and grid-edge efforts. But does it?

Has your transformer’s or circuit breaker’s cost been cut in half while doubling its electric capacity every 18 months? No.

Why do I refer to 18 months? Because the chasm-crossing model is driven not by our industry but by the more rapid pace of change in the IT and semiconductor industries, due to the 18-month “rule” in Moore’s Law. (Moore’s Law — from Intel’s Gordon Moore, not “Crossing the Chasm’s” Geoffrey Moore — says that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit doubles approximately every 18 months, and has been born out since the invention of the transistor in the 1950s, with ongoing reductions in associated costs and increases in associated computing power.)

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