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Google Wave is a new Open Source collaboration system designed by Google. It has features that are like email, threaded like a bulletin board, but also instantaneous like a instant messaging system. It allows collaborative editing like a wiki with concurrent editing and a built-in versioning system. You could use it to collaboratively build documents, make plans or even take notes during a presentation. It supports text and images with plans to support spreadsheets and presentation slides.

All this is supported by a client/server architecture. The server is a Wave Provider which provides data storage and low-latency updates to the clients. The clients are web browsers using Javascript and HTML. The client even runs on Apple iPhones and Google Android phones.

The reason I emphasize Open Source is that while Google has some open source projects their main code is closed source running on their servers. Their idea of Google Wave is that it is an open systems somewhat like the open email protocols. This means that people who have Google accounts can collaborate with people who are using another Wave server and still have instantaneous communication through the Google Wave federation architecture.


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Edited: July 09, 2014, at 04:24 PM
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