The technology adoption lifecycle is a sociological model that is an extension of an earlier model called the diffusion process.
Beal, Rogers and Bohlen together developed a model called the diffusion process and later Everett Rogers generalized the use of it in his widely acclaimed book, Diffusion of Innovations (now in its fifth edition), describing how new ideas and technologies spread in different cultures.
The report summarised the categories as:
- innovators – had larger farms, were more educated, more prosperous and more risk-oriented
- early adopters – younger, more educated, tended to be community leaders, less prosperous
- early majority – more conservative but open to new ideas, active in community and influence to neighbours
- late majority – older, less educated, fairly conservative and less socially active
- laggards – very conservative, had small farms and capital, oldest and least educated