Google never cease to astonish me with their innovation. In a month when 'Wolfram Alpha' and 'Microsoft Bing' filled the technology headlines, and people were talking about Twitter and the way that real time search was changing everything, they announce WAVE and completely turned the whole communication model on its head.
In typical Google style, they keep there best until last, waiting until the second day of the Google Developer Conference in the Moscone Center, San Francisco on May 27 - 28, 2009, to show us WAVE.
So what's so good about WAVE and why did i say it will turn the communications model on its head? Up until now we have tried to imitate none-electronic world (ie the paper world) with our online communications technologies, sending - then receiving, storing documents in folders, working in structured linear patterns publishing the finished product without showing how we got there, keeping separate information in separate places, reading-writing-sharing-collaborating. All this could soon change. Wave allows us to work together in an altogether different way, working in real time to seeing content as its typed, utilizing richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps and other tools.
And its not just the way that we communicate in the sense of instant messaging and text, that is going to change its also things like blogs and websites, imaging being able to collaboratively leave comments to a blog post, where you could use text,images, movies, maps and more to make your point, or a pole where you could discuss your opinions in real time with other users, and that is only a beginning, the implications for the way we watch movies, sports or tv, or even the way that we play games or do puzzles on line could be radically different, and after a day, we haven't even started to explore the possibilities. Imagine the way that mass collaborations may work with science or the arts, the way that we conduct research or that we learn. Its like Lars and Jens Rasmussen, have opened a flood gate on web development and release a wave of new possibilities
Part of what makes what the Google Wave team have done special, is that its all open source, and its all possible in the browser (yes its html 5 so you will need a modern browser, but one the whole it doesn't need any special add ins). So we're likely to see the technology being pushed to all sorts of extremes with developers coming up with all sorts of clever and innovative ways to utilize this technology, in other words we ain't seen nothin yet!
Google have always been great innovators, but they've never been satisfied with that, they seem determined to rewrite every rules and make us rethink everything we thought we knew.