Hello World Wave

A couple of weeks ago, I was luck enough to be given an invite to Google Wave.

I clearly remember using Gmail for the first time some 5 or 6 years ago.  Gmail was (very!) fast to use, the design was simple and it just worked!

Gmail is email in a browser.  Nothing more.  At the time, it’s competed with Hotmail and Yahoo Mail, so the learning curve was quite easy.

My expectations were very clear and it was easy to meet them.

Wave is entirely different!  What is it??  Even the Wikipedia article is general and non specific:

equal parts conversation and document

I was reading another review by Cathie McGinn which got me thinking.  I certainly agree that it feels like you are drowning, not waving.

From my understanding, she is using Wave as a collaboration tool, with her focus on the people she works with.  She raised some privacy and general usability issues

Usability I am going to leave.  If you take into context what Wave is doing (realtime collaboration with +100 people at a time) in a web browser, I don’t think there is a whole lot you that can be done right now.  I would give it at least 12 months for the technically and logistical challenges to be fixed.

Her point on privacy was interesting (branch off a conversation as private, but then no ability to approve who is) is a tricky one.

For me, when I first saw Wave, the immediate appeal was for personal, not professional.  Think of Facebook without the noise.  I don’t care if the content in Wave is only updated once a week, so long as it was relevant, accurate and without spam – I would be happy!

What do you think?

Wave hello to Google!

I’ve just watched the Google Wave demo given at the Google IO Conference.

At first glance, Wave is a fantastic idea!

If you are using email to communicate with your family and friends, this will change the way you work.

Think in your mind what you use Facebook for. If you had to tell me this, 5 years ago:

I update my friends on what I’m doing. I can see their photo’s and comment on them. If I see someone I know in your photos, i can tag

So there are certainly obvious benefits. But I think what is of more value is the subtle changes.
– “Been” (sic.) Soup Spell check
– Drag and drop images
– realtime updates

And so forth…

Check it out!

iPod, Flash & Scoble??

I read this morning Rober Scoble’s post regarding the iPod and Flash. A quick summary:

On a week when Microsoft landed a big deal to put Silverlight on Nokia phones, Apple’s CEO, Steve Jobs, tells Adobe that there won’t be Flash on the iPhone.

I remember reading that an iPod will never have pictures. That an iPod will never have video and I remember how long it took for Apple to get on the whole Podcast band wagon.

I agree with Socble that this is an opportunity for Silverlight etc. but if I was Adobe I wouldn’t be slashing my wrists just yet.

I see there are three ways this could go:

  1. Apple could team up with someone and provide an alternate to Flash
  2. The market could just write a version  of Flash and hook it in
  3. Apple could just do nothing

It is very unlikely that option 3 will happen.  So it’s either 1) or 2).

Apple didn’t embrace Podcasts, the market went forth anyway. Option 2) is a possibility.  Google has a big investment in Flash (YouTube etc).  Commercially, there is a lot of potential for Google and Adobe to combine and come up with something.

Apple teaming up with someone else???  The “someone else” would really have to change the way they work.  Microsoft?  Its possible…  My bet is still with the 2nd one.

We’ll see!

Google Docs a Fail???

Scoble did a post suggesting that Google Docs is a failure.

I’ve just started using Google Spreadsheet seriously.  I think Scoble is being a little over dramatic.

To me, it is all about the right tool for the right job.  I’m using Google Spreadsheet because the people I am working with are a lot older than I and “online collaboration” isn’t something they understand.

I often laugh when people complain about problems with something that is free.

I do agree that Google Docs has limited features.  But I also remember the early days of java and the promises of using a spreadsheet in your browser.

So no, I don’t think Google docs is choc full of fail.  Are they listening?  Well I would think so but I can’t imagine they are going to do much about it.

Seriously, why should Google do anything about this?  Adobe has come out with Buzzword.  I think that it is an interesting experiment for Google, but there is no revenue in it…

To me, the real question is “if Google Docs really is failing, then who is succeeding?”

If no one is succeeding, then why should / would Google do something different???

Google History

I saw this on Seth’s site. He talks about a new Google Feature that shows your search history.

I think this is funny. The stuff I search for at work (.Net, MSDN, Vendors etc) is VERY different than what I search for at home (torrents, blogs, pr0n etc.)

Seth said the brain looks for patterns. His chart showed that he does most of his searches on Mondays and Tuesdays.

He then says:
I can guarantee that there are no external factors at work here. It’s a coincidence. Short version: just because a graph looks good doesn’t mean it’s true.
I’d be very surprised if there isn’t a pattern. Remember this guys is a writer. He does research. Maybe he has a weekly delivery, maybe he gets his reference material early in the week.

I think there’s a pattern!

Rock on!

G-string girl dumped in gutter

Ok this terrible story isn’t news. What is, is when you read the article. It has a Google Maps link to the site where the incident happened…

These times are a changing!!!

[Update: 22-Jan-2010]
I’ve been cleaning up some of my older entries and this one has stuck in my mind. Imagine you have found a house you would like to buy. You go through the normal process of looking what the area is like, what the neighbors are like etc. Imagine being able to search in say, a 500 meter radius of that house, for any significant event. Would you change your mind if you knew the above girl was dumped at the end of your street???