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Riding The Google Wave

We all have heard about Google Wave. We all want invites for it. Some us  got them and excitedly opened up the Google Wave. 10 minutes into it most us are bored. We don't know what to do with it. So we turn to the really long video of Wave (80 mins) and due to the slow internet connection, we give up that too and finally shutdown the browser. MTV even joked about the video that it was so long, may be Ashutosh Gowariker has directed it!!

This is my attempt at demystifying the Google Wave. I have tried to include some pictures so that it is clearer. Before we begin, let me tell you that Google Wave is still a preview version so it is buggy and crashes often. OK, enough of gyaan, let's begin...

1. A fast internet connection. A slow one will ruin your Waving experience.
2. A browser that supports HTML 5.0 and has a powerful JavaScript engine. Google recommends Chrome and Mozilla Firefox 3.5 and above. Internet Explorer doesn't support Wave. But if you still want to use it, then you will have to download the Chrome Frame for Internet Explorer. 
3. Google Gears. Although it is not mandatory, but it will surely enhance your waving experience by drag-and-drop support, slideshow, and much more.
Let's Wave!!

OK, so we are now all set to wave. We login to Google Wave, and the user interface comes up. You can't help but compare it to Microsoft® Office® Outlook®. But the similarity ends here.

So what is new in Wave. Wave essentially combines Mail, Chat, Collaboration and much more all-in-one. It is the future of Mail. You see Email (which is now 40 years old!!) is like snail-mail. You write something and then you send it across to your friends who can then reply/forward it.

So if you had to work on a document and then ask for reviews, you would have to send a copy to your friend and then wait for his reply. But in Google Wave, the wave is stored on a central server, meaning anyone, who is on that wave, can edit it and others can see that happening in real-time.

You can add your comments, drag-and-drop pictures, video, URLs and everything will be visible to the other user happening in real-time!!

You can extend this real-time capability to play games (like Sudoku, Chess), have real-time polls, share notes of a meeting, the possibilities are endless.

More from Wave:
Google Wave can be used for posting your images, articles to blogs, Twitter, Orkut, etc. You can see that wave in your Wave client and don't have visit every site to see how user's have commented on your work. You can see all that in one single place.

For example, if you have uploaded a picture on 10 sites/blogs and now want to edit the caption. You would have to visit every single page to do that. But using Wave, you post your wave on as many sites you want and in one single edit of the wave, the changes will be reflected on all the sites, in real-time!!!

As Wave is open-source, you can develop your own extensions to it and use it on your website. Enterprises can use it to collaborate by using their own server and not share any data with Google or any third party.

The day when Google Wave becomes stable, I predict that most companies would switch to it. Will that be and end to other forms of communication? Not really as we are so heavily dependent on them, we won't change the way we work so quickly. But Wave will surely revolutionize the Internet and make the world a better place.

Happy Waving!!

P.S.- I have about 26 invites of Google Wave left. So if you want it leave your email address here and I will get back to you.


  1. good one !!!!.... I will add that for young entrepreneurs it could be a very good solution for the lack of their infrastructure.....

  2. Not only young entrepreneurs but it will be helpful even to big organizations provided they have the guts to move to this kind of framework!!

  3. right now just for the tech-enthusiasts.. is confusing for most of the users.. I doubt if Corporates will prefer it over sharepoint server which offers them more control and meet archiving needs as required internally / law.

    emails are based on certain standards which everyone has to follow theres nothing like this for Wave, which gives google a chance to hold your data as hostage.. how easily can u get ur data out of the wave ???

    A fresh thought indeed but not of much use right now...


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