Skip navigation

Tag Archives: open source

Described as a “personal communication and collaboration tool,” Google Wave allows users to chat and share documents including audio files, videos and photos in real-time.
Google Wave: What is it and how does it work?

Created as an open-source platform, Vic Gundotra, VP of engineering for Google explained the reasons for this: “It’s open sourced for many reasons. Not only do we want to contribute to the Internet but frankly we need developers to help us complete this product and we need your support.”

What makes Google Wave particularly revolutionary is the real-time aspect. Whereas most social media tools involve an element of waiting around as one person waits for another to respond, with a message such as “Person X is typing” usually appearing in the corner, Wave allows users to see what’s being typed as instantly as it appears on the typer’s screen. In the case of sensitive information sharing, an opt-out button allows users to conceal what they are writing until they hit the “send” button.

Google Wave.gifGoogle Wave is the brain-child of Lars and Jens Rasmussen, the brothers who bought us Google Maps. They explain they wanted to “rethink what a single communications platform might look like if we started from scratch.” Lars asked the 4,000-strong audience: “What would email look like if it were invented today?” The idea, they say, was to start with a clean slate, rather than have today’s Internet reality determine what could be possible in the future or even present. By readjusting this approach, they were able to look at online communication in fresh and innovative ways.

The project has been ongoing for two years and since then has expanded along with the team, who have added seemingly simple functions that risk rendering current communication platforms “backward” by comparison. For instance, a document uploaded on Wave can be edited by multiple users in one go, with changes appearing instantaneously, adding a new spin to the term “team work.” — Read more