Google Wave: 5 Ways It Could Change the Web
Google Wave arrives on September 30th. On that day, Google (Google) will start sending out 100,000 invites to non-developers to its much-anticipated real-time communication platform.
It’s not even released and it’s generating more hype than almost any other web product in recent memory. The reason stems from its game-changing features and their potential applications on business, education, customer service, email, social networking, and more.
So with Wave on the way, we wanted to explore some of the potential of Google’s upcoming product. We have a few of our own ideas and included some from Google Wave (Google Wave) developers, but more than anything, we want your ideas, so be sure to leave your great Google Wave invention in the comments! Who knows, maybe we’ll feature them in the future!
1. Wave-Powered Forums
This idea’s actually been in my head before, but it’s articulated with some depth by Andrew Camel in the Google Wave API Google Group:
“So I thought that it would be an awesome feature of google wave to have it power a forum. Each thread, instead of being multiple different posts, it would just be a google wave. So, instead of having to try a discussion by posting and going back to the page and checking for new replies and while you were posting, you missed a new part of the discussion, you can post like you are having an instant-message session and you can also save the posts like forum threads. I really think that this would be a great use of the google wave api.”
Real-time threads? Saving waves like forum threads? Google Wave?! Sign us up!
2. Wave-powered Commenting System
wave photo sharing image
We actually alluded to this possibility in our Google Wave Guide when we discussed Wave Embeds:
“One possibility: Google Wave Embeds may be a real-time replacement to static comments. If Google perfects wave embeds, you could even see YouTube (YouTube).com comments replaced with waves, although it is way too early to make any calls on the potential of this.”
Now that we’ve had some time to play with Wave, we think more than ever that Wave as a commenting system is a real possibility. Each blog post or YouTube video could have a new wave, where users could converse about practically anything in real-time. Anybody who comes in late can just play back the wave and get up to speed. It could be a whole new era for commenting.
3. Wave-Based Content Management System
A thread in the API group discusses the possibility of using Wave as a project management system. I’ll be honest – even I’ve been toying with this idea. Here’s what Jason Salas said in the thread:
I think that maybe many of the major CMS vendors will create extensions (if we don’t do it ourselves) to integrate their products with Wave. That’s what I’m working on now. But that is a neat idea to actually use Wave as its own CMS platform, with assumed features
like document creation/management, scheduling, RSS feeds, (micro) blogging, archival/search, etc.”
Can’t you see it?
4. Wave for Customer Support
This idea actually comes from a thread in the Google Wave development preview titled “What Will You Use it For?” It’s a remarkable discussion and brainstorming session over the potential of wave. One of the most fleshed-out ideas in the thread, though, is Wave for customer support. Here are some of the bullet-points for how Wave could be used in customer support:
- Sending trouble tickets
- Incident tracking can be a wave
- Call center analytics gadget
- Distribution list gadget
- Customer meta-data gadget
- Surveys can be a wave
Real-time customer support? Yeah, someone please build that.
5. Wave for Education
We reported a few days ago that Google is giving some schools and businesses an early look at Google Wave. But why? What could Wave possibly accomplish in the realm of education and business? A lot, we firmly believe.
I refer once again to the “What Will You Use it For?” Wave in the dev preview for some ideas for how Wave can be used in education.
- Building a more interactive / creative learning environment
- Proofreading / writing papers
- Brainstorming potential project ideas
- Interactive tutoring from home
- Collaborative Environment for Cyber Schooling
With more widgets, you could embed streams and communicate with professors in real-time. We’re excited about Wave’s potential to transform education.
What Are Your Ideas?
We’ve highlighted some of our ideas and many ideas from enthusiasts across the web. So now it’s your turn. What is your idea for Google Wave? We want to hear your thoughts and your opinions in the comments.
Oh, and if you need a little inspiration for your idea, be sure to check out our comprehensive Google Wave coverage: