Last May, Google introduced a new program that would be the newest way to communicate online. Google Wave is a “personal communication and collaboration tool,” that combines multiple communication platforms. Google designed Google Wave to combine e-mail, instant messaging, wikis and social media onto one, easy and usable platform.
Sounds pretty convincing. Imagine being able to chat with your friends, while working on a live document with co-workers or classmates, while updating your status all in one program that allows for computing systems like spelling and grammar checks/corrections. Oh, you have a language barrier with someone you need to communicate with? Don’t worry about it! The Wave supports automated translation of around 40 different languages!
Google Wave was initally released just to developers when it was first announced last year, but in September 2009, Google sent out invitations to 100,000 users. Google then allowed each of those users to send out invitations to additional users. This is still going on, however, anyone can request to be invited to take part in the Wave beginning in November 2009.
Google Wave is still in development, and still “invitation-only,” but Google users can request an invitation if they’re interested. It is expected to be live and running later this year. Also, because this is a Google application we’re talking about, Google plans to make the program an open-source in hopes that other developers will hop on the Wave train and come up with their own versions of the communication platform.
In case you’re still a little confused about Google Wave, here’s a little more to confuse you from Google Wave’s homepage:
What is a wave?
A wave is equal parts conversation and document. People can communicate and work together with richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps, and more.
A wave is shared. Any participant can reply anywhere in the message, edit the content and add participants at any point in the process. Then playback lets anyone rewind the wave to see who said what and when.
A wave is live. With live transmission as you type, participants on a wave can have faster conversations, see edits and interact with extensions in real-time.
I think Google Wave could be very beneficial for businesses in the future. But because of its many uses, however, I also think it could be beneficial for those who occupy their free/downtime online.
Here are just a couple of times when Google suggests to use Google Wave:
- Organizing your own events
- Group projects
- Photo sharing
- Interactive games
For me, the best way to learn how to do something is to actually go through the motions. To get acclamated with Google Wave, I suggest using it. It may still be in the invitation stage, but Google’s open to sending you an invitation. You just have to ask. And then invite your friends. It’ll be a party.