Stefano’s Stuffs


Wow, I’m inside the Wave of Google. It’s a very “preview” version, with few people and everyone that try to learn fast how to use all the power of this application. The first think I thought was: “Damn.It’s difficult.” but it’s the same thing I thought when I opened for the very first time my Twitter account. I hope that Google Wave will become very popular in a few months and everyone could use it, especially as a pro/organizing tools and a possible e-mail replacement. I read some little walkthroughs on the net and I try now to give my little help to the Wave newbies (EVERYONE is a Wave newbie;-)):


The ”Navigation” and the “inbox” windows are similiar to every e-mail layouts; instead of mails you receive/search/list “waves”. The “Contacts” box is related to your friends; Wave automatically shows here your Gmail’s contacts that just have a Wave account. If there’s a green little light near the image of one of your contacts, it means that he/she’s online so you can “ping” him/her with an instant message by using the ping option. You can also ping your friends when they are offline and they can read your messages at the next login. You can also search for new contacts with the “+” button and hope that your friend has just received a Wave invite. During next months this problem will disappear:-).

At first time you can show some public waves by searching in the “inbox” field with “with: public xxx” where xxx is a tag of your choice (like with:public Tokyo). Public waves are really messy, very alpha testing style, full of people’s attempts etc..They are useful now but I think they will disappear in the future:  they appear like lines and lines of old MIrc text, like if your mailbox is full of spam;-). You can start a new wave by easily clickin’ on the “new wave” line at the right (don’t thrash the two initial waves made by Google team because they are useful for installing extensions!) and add friend to it by drag’n drop or “add” button. Here you can write text (and try the powerful translator option with your foreign friends) via the rich “compose” toolbar, reply to existing messages, edit messages of other people, post files as you do in a standard e-mail (max 20mb) or directly put an image inside the wave (you need Google Gears for drag’n drop option): all in REAL TIME! This means that also the text input is absolutely “live typing” so everyone inside your wave could see what are you writing, so pay a LOT of attention about what you write:-).

Because waves change continuously there is also a “playback” feature, where you can see every step, every modification of the wave, like a giant “history” command. Not really simple to use in a public wave;-). There’s also the possibility to write “private replies” to some partecipants of a wave, by click on the arrow next to the timestamp in the compose window and select “private reply” and add 1,2,1000 friends that will read your private message. You can also link to another wave inside yours, by searching for it in the search panel and drag’n drop the line directly inside the wave.Here come some restrictions about “who can see who”, so if you need to see the contents of the two waves you must be a partecipant of both of them.

Similiar to Gmail you can archive waves, mute waves, tag every waves as you like and also create folders for store them. This means that waves must be used and archived continuously, exactly as e-mail, and you can create a wave just for speakin/editing/sharing/organizing things with only one contact. It’s a mix between an e-mail , an rss feed, a chat, a social network…It’s really powerful and can clearly be a “nightmare” for a lot of other web services. You’ll see the updates about a wave in your inbox because the text will become bold and a green bubble with a number will show you how many messages you haven’t read yet.

You can also install extensions (some are just installed, like a “yes, no, maybe” poll creator and a maps application where you can share in real-time places, POI and so on…) and I’m learning about “robots”; they appear like normal contacts in some waves but they aren’t human and they do some automatic tasks inside the wave if you add them as partecipants, like “auto-twitter” the wave and so on…Oh my God, it’s fantastic.


October 12, 2009 Posted by | computer | , , , , , | Leave a comment