This post is an addendum to my other regarding Google Wave and the Nook, but focusses on why I am not an early adopter usually, but why I am going to be one for Google Wave and the Barnes and Noble Nook.
I have a hard time getting excited about new technology, I do not consider myself an early adopter, despite my role as a usability professional, and my background in cutting edge technology production.
The process and end product of creating cutting edge technology from scratch seems to be fraught with limitations and guesswork. This applies not only to the technology used in creation, and the product itself, but lack of knowledge around potential marketplace desire for what is being produced. The first few releases are usually incredibly expensive, and they are only slight approximations of what they are intended to become, or to be used for.
Working for 2 GPS (Satnav) producers while GPS went from luxury consumer item (early adopters) to mainstream christmas gifts (and lower price brackets) showed me just how much extra goes into each subsequent release. The first few iterations are deliveries of limited products with only a goal of becoming what they were really designed for (version 8 might be the right one to buy?). I prefer to wait until the people creating these new and wonderful life changing experiences have had time and resources to refine and make the product more sophisticated, based off other people's complaints, before I bash my head against the proverbial brick wall of owning something straight out of someone's imagination, because nothing is ever as good in real life as it was in your imagination right?