The future of email and collaboration: Google Wave


Have you ever wondered what email would be like if it were invented today? Well, wonder no more as the genius behind Google Maps are giving us a taste of just that with Google Wave.

First and foremost, keep in mind that email was invented in 1971 (thats almost 4 decades ago). Over the years, we have seen the evolution of email to some extend: the threading feature in gmail for instance helps keep conversations organized. However, the entire platform of email is changed through google wave.

Secondly, email today have yet to find an impressive way to incorporate the social media sites and the easy to use features of Twitter/Facebook.

How is Google Wave different from my regular email?

While Google Wave is not fully released to be public yet and by invitation only, here are some noted features that impressed me from the demonstration video:

  • Cloud Email
Although the term might not be very intuitive, what it means is that instead of emailing back and forth, the conversation is stored online. This has its benefit since you can include others in your conversation instantly and they can join in any point during the conversation. This kind of reminds me of the Facebook comments option. One of the impressive aspect of this is to be able to comment on any area within the email and keep track of it through a feature called "playback".

  • Real time collaboration
The real time collaboration aspect of Google Wave makes it very exciting for me. Instead of getting that "User is typing..." you have the option to show the other person your thoughts as you type them. The option to collaborate on photos and exporting the content and conversation as "comments" to your blog in real time can be seen as a blessing with possible repercussions.

I am still awaiting my invite for Google Wave and once I have a chance to use it first hand, I would love to provide a more detailed review on the product. For now, it's all very exciting. My main worries are the sluggishness in the performance and whether everything would look too cluttered. Google has a history of organizing information so I hope not to be disappointed :)

In the meantime, enjoy the long video demonstration of Google Wave provided by the Australian engineers who worked on it:

Sign up for an invite for Google Wave

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