Google Wave: A Whole New Communication and Collaboration Platform for the Web

Andres Ferrate
May. 28 2009, 02:28PM EDT

During the keynote presentation today at Google I/O, Google announced the private beta release of Wave (our Google Wave API Profile), a new online communication and collaboration tool that allows for real time information exchange and much more.

According to Google:

Google Wave is a product that helps users communicate and collaborate on the web. A "wave" is equal parts conversation and document, where users can almost instantly communicate and work together with richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps, and more. Google Wave is also a platform with a rich set of open APIs that allow developers to embed waves in other web services and to build extensions that work inside waves.

Google Wave

This is a feature rich product that also exposes several APIs that allow for additional integration and extensibility of "waves." You can check out the API documentation as well as several other developer resources to get an idea of the breadth of features and methods available for the API. Be sure to sign up for the private beta and request access to the developer sandbox as well.

Google Wave

In addition to the APIs, Google has also moved forward with a Google Wave Federation Protocol, which is the underlying network protocol for sharing waves between wave providers.

According to the Google Wave Federation Protocol site:

On top of that, with the Google Wave APIs, developers can take advantage of this collaborative system by building on the Google Wave platform. We want to expand upon that platform, which is why we've put together the initial draft of the Google Wave Federation Protocol, the underlying network protocol for sharing waves between wave providers.

Yes, that's between wave providers: anyone can build a wave server and interoperate, much like anyone can run their own SMTP server. The wave protocol is open to contributions by the broader community with the goal to continue to improve how we share information, together.

So it looks like Wave has the potential to become a game changing communication and information dissemination tool as well as a valuable protocol that can be leveraged by social networks, data providers, and other services that would benefit from a standardized means for information exchange. Stay tuned for additional information about Wave in the coming weeks, and be sure to sign up to "track this API" using our ProgrammableWeb API tracker.

Andres Ferrate

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[...] The release of the prototype server comes less than six months after Google Wave as initially previewed at the Google I/O conference, and about a month after Google Wave was opened up as a public preview to select users. There is a [...]