To Wave or Not to Wave
I must admit that I’m pretty late to this party. In fact it was someone at Taizé who pointed me in it’s direction. What I’m talking about is Google Wave, the big thing Google announced before Chrome OS. In simple terms it’s Google’s way of attempting to re-work how we and the Internet work. In the presentation video you can watch (which is quite long) the first thing they point out is Internet communications via e-mail or chat were digital ways of copying what we did in analogue. It was also pointed out that as the Internet has matured nothing has changed as the technologies are largely stayed the same.
So the clever people at Google have put forth Google Wave as the new way of communicating on the web. The main thing is that a lot of it is real time. You can create a “wave” and send it to a friend, they can reply to that and if you’re online it would show up real time. You can also reply at any point in the message so you can reply to specific parts. The real-time element means if both on line it sort of like chat however if one is offline it’s very much like e-mail. At the same time you can then include someone else on the wave and they can see all or just part of the full wave. You can also include your Blogger account as a recipient and post to your blog. Then if people reply they then show up in your wave account and you can reply there without going to your blog.
It’s this central hub aspect of Google Wave that I like. I comment on a few blogs as well as things like Twitter and Facebook. If the Wave API was include in all these services it would be fantastic. One central location where I can reply to any message I receive in the online world and thanks to Wave it’s not a far fetched idea. However one wonders how this will relate to those who want to Wave but don’t want to use a Googlemail account. I mean I have a gmail account and use it for things like calendar and groups but I don’t use it as my main e-mail account. Instead I use my e-mail attached to this domain and if I wanted to use Google Wave I’d want to use it with this account as it’s the one all my friends know and I use it on many different things. Now Google Wave is open source but I doubt they’d let anyone use it anywhere else as it uses a central server (more cloud stuff) so it won’t move from Google’s house.
So where would that leave me? I could set up a set of forwarders and the like so everything ends up at Google but that’s too much hassle. I could also tell people from henceforth to e-mail my gmail account but I’d rather not do that either. Yes I’m being a bit of a stick in the mud but I bought this domain with the sole purpose of giving me a place to blog, showcase my photos and to have an e-mail address that was more personal. While Google Wave is fascinating I won’t be abandoning ship on my e-mail here just to use it. No I think in the end I will Wave but in a limited capacity perhaps just to see what it’s like, test it’s features and see what cool stuff they’ll impliment between now and release. I may be suprised and they will have though of a way around my issue but I doubt it. However, I will say that if you’re a sole gmail user or happy to move your mail to it then by all accounts do so as Google Wave looks awesome and really is a cool new way to interact with the web.