Google Wave Gadgets lack quality

I tested quite a bit of different Google Wave gadgets in my christmas calender last month. I tried 40 different apps with a large verity in their complexity and usability. Some of them did not have any useful functions or did not work.

I really liked many of the ideas created in the gadgets and some was really useful. It was fun to see how people wanted to impress with new ideas.

The quality of the gadgets and robot was lausy. Mine included. I believe that many of to my application must be improved. But with the limited option in the robot API hinders making layouts to shine. It also provide a hindering there is a lack of way the gadget/robots can work together. If there was a better way to make the gadgets/robot work together, the layout issues could be solved.

I will say that most of the gadgets except maybe the simpler voting gadgets all require extra work before they can be used by a wider audience. The robots where you need to write commands with # or ! as the only thing in blip, I doubt that my mother will pick it up easily which is required to get non tech savvy users on board.

One key to make it possible to get the robot to function better is to pay the developers. I guess most of the developers of the robots/gadgets I have seen just tried the protocol out of see if they could make something useful. And they can. But to make them look wave-y the gadgets need to look better.

To make the gadgets/robot complete we need to be able to get some better apis and more importantly be able to charge for your apps. Currently it can be possible to charge for the usage of a robot and with some development also a gadget, but it is a pain and will require to much of the user.

I’m therefore looking forward a Wave app store is created. It will be interesting to see if it only supports one time payments or monthly payments and maybe even corporate multi seat licenses. The wave app store will mean that more developers will start with developing programs for Google Wave, making the platform more attractive.

I’m currently only letting my apps be available to my mail list subscribers. We have a new scrum gadget that just need to be published. So sign up to the newsletter and try it out.

The Google Wave hype is over; now start use it

I have seen the number of visitors on my site drop quite a bit. I’m not sure that I’m the only one how is seeing it. I guess that it is because Wave is not as novel any more and people how want access an ready has access. They can therefore create their own opinion about how it should work and how they can use Wave.

There as also be fewer announcements of software for the Wave. It could be because we was near christmas and it was not time for any news, but there could also be reasons like the users are not ready yet.

We saw last year that 12sprints(a SAP project) was released, which in some aspects looks like Google Wave but more structured. An Novell which created a property Wave server them self and then found they could support Wave instead and get more traction. I think there will be more products that lean towards Wave as a way to appeal to a larger community. The different softwares will make the usage more difficult to figure out for users and to select the correct tool for them.

I guess that it is the early adopters using Wave now and they are introducing their friends to Wave. When I was introduced to 12sprints the idea was to figure out how you will use it your self and then add your friends. With Wave it is a bit different, on waveyou just add you friends and then figure how you will use it. That mean you get a lot of different options on how wave can be implement. I have many different ways I’m using Google Wave and with different parties. There are many different use cases with Wave.

A problem with Google Wave is that it is seldom you notice any difference in the interface, and many of the changes are small to fix some bugs. Ie the Robot api has not been changed since 16 september, even there are some improvement that would be nice to implement.

Evaluation of the first Google Wave meetup in Denmark

Just got home from the first meetup in Denmark.

The event was held at the IT University, which is a really fancy new building. Check out some of the pictures from the site. Thanks Jacques Holst for getting the room.

There was around 25 persons with different experiences with Google Wave. 5 had not used Wave, and only 2 had developed applications on Wave. Guess that includes yours truly. So there are not a lot of developers on Wave arround. What a shame, but makes the area much better for us.

I had an idea of people had knowledge of Google Wave, but since that was not the case I had to make a 15 minutes introduction to Wave. I should probably create a few slides shows for the 5 and 15 minute introduction of Wave, which can be used in such instances. I think the introduction was ok, though it would have helped if I had presentations for the amount of time.

Jacques gave a great presentation on how his class made notes in Wave. The whole class was on Wave and they could easily take notes together. It was to early to guess if the use of Wave for studes was giving better learning. Jacques said he feldt he learned more using Wave to take notes in collaboration with the others. They also uploaded the slides and commented on them in Wave.

I gave a short demo of how Gravity and my Enterprise Service robot works. For more info see the post New SAP ES Demo: Creating Service Requests.

I pitched Google Technology User Group Gtug.dk and hope we can gather enough people to start a chapter in Copenhagen. Please join on gtug.dk and we will see if we can start something.

Lastly we talked about if we should have more meetings. We agreed on having a next meeting sometime in January 2010. There will be focus on some development perspective, and it will be interesting to see what we can create.

If you where at the event, please comment on how you feel we can make next event better. Either hire as comments or in the Wave we created. Was the meetup.com site any useful or can we just organize the whole thing in Wave.

Slides from the presentation:

Etiquette on Wave to is too complicated

One of my favorite blogs on Google  Wave (The Shiny Wave)  have picked up a Wave with Etiquette on Google Waves. The interesting aspect is that when you are working with somebody else you can get a lot of noise or disturbance. Many times when you are collaborating with a lot of other people you are missing the rules for the conversation. This etiquette is a way to make some of the rules more global.

With no Access Control Layers (ACL) or rules it is not possible to ban people from editing any part of the Wave. That mean if you have public waves or to a group waves you need to hope your users does not make any changes. So Google Wave is build on trust and you need to trust the people in order to make posts go nuts.

There is a good judgment of people not to mess up any documents. An example is the The Declaration of Independence, where it would look really strange if anyone changed on the wave. It seems like nobody are vandalizing the document. On a side note the document and users seems to originate from thirteencolonies.net, which must be a hosted domain. So you can share from hosted domains to Wave. Can anyone edit in the Wave hire?

The blog on the Shiny Wave mentions a Wave By Elliot Cable, which talks about the different types of moderation. All waves should med have on of the following tags. I would suggest you to go to the wave to get the full idea of each type.

  • tag:moderated: is the mildest form of moderation and therefore give most discussions.
  • tag:edit-moderated: is where only the initial blip should not be changed but the rest are more relaxed.
  • tag:reply-moderated: is where the participants should collaborate in a separate Wave, the Wave owner will then transfer the content to the Wave.
  • tag:locked: is when you don’t anybody to edit in your Wave, so why use Wave?

One problem is that you have to understand the difference between those four levels of interaction. If you have not written the rules or been a part in the generation, you will not know how to see the difference and what you are allowed to to on the current Wave. This could stop people from taking a part in the discussion.

Most if not all of the rules described hire should be possible to implement programmatic. It would make it much easier for users to implement the changes suggested. Then it is just to make the changes a part of the ACL for the Wave protocol, which obvious also needs to support the changes.