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February 17, 2010

Google Wave, HTML5 and Flash

I have been using Google wave for it's wiki like features, and not so much for collaboration. I have used it just once to collaborate. A couple of us friends planned a road trip last Christmas. I demoed the playback of the wiki to show how nicely the entire brainstorming process for the trip was shown by Google Wave.

I use it 8 hours a day at work to manage my notes and to-do items. I use Exchange for all serious calendering and communication, and google wave in it's preview mode is no challenger to MS Exchange. Yet.

This 3 month exposure gave me a non-mission critical, yet "always-on, hands-on" experience with this technology. The features I use are the wiki nature of the main wave, and the ability to track changes and revert to previous versions. I do not use the threaded discussion feature, because, I don't collaborate much. I feel the two features should be mixed with extra care for the sake of sanity.


So ask me, vic, why not just use a wiki? It's because of a great feature under development for Wave: embedding publicly.

In the future I would be able to seamlessly embed waves as content pages in LMSs and other websites. My team will have one dashboard to collaboratively manage content and that looks quite attractive to me for team content management. The functionality does exist now, but it's not mainstream enough like embedding a YouTube video. You need to add HTML / JS code to your webpage... not ideal.

IMO, the preview stage of any service is an opportunity to critique and discover potential. Don't write off Wave yet, it may become the future of collaboration. The number of crashes while using the web interface if wave has dramatically reduced. The JavaScripts / Dhtml sometimes overheat and make the browser hang into a coma. [I use wave on the web only, I do not use wave clients.]

The apparent memory management glitches led to a discussion of Steve Job's recent comments on Flash, Apple Inc and HTML 5*. Jobs had recently made it clear that the mystery plug in that causes a majority of crashes is in fact flash. This revulsion to flash is a concern for flash developers and flash content managers (all of us?). Apple looks forward to HTML 5 which will eliminate needs of flash shells for playing video or loading up a boatload of plug ins to handle media content. last time I checked, HTML 5 is at least 10 -15 years away** and Apple is working around this problem by making flash content run as a separate thread and not bring down the entire application with it. It may not appear as a separate app like it does on the iPhone. Adobe too will not throw in the towel and is bound to come up with better flash players.

* http://www.informationweek.com/blog/main/archives/2008/03/jobs_flash_not.html

** http://wiki.whatwg.org/wiki/FAQ#When_will_HTML5_be_finished.3F

Posted by rdivecha at February 17, 2010 12:57 PM

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