You can’t spend any time on Twitter without geeks lusting after Google Wave. Here’s my quick take…it has as much chance catching on as RSS did.
I have had a Google
Wave sandbox account since late July. It’s slick to be sure. However, what I keep asking myself is this: what problem does it solve? In many ways it’s overly complex. In fact it’s too complex for the era of the Attention Crash where all of us, especially knowledge workers, are crying for simplicity.
Could it be an amazing enterprise collaboration tool? Sure, maybe. Could it be a Twitter, Facebook
or email killer for consumers or a cure for cancer? I doubt it.
Wave requires a new way of thinking. Sure, we’re capable of it as humans. But as Mike Elgan
, Anil Dash
wisely assess, Wave maybe ahead of its time. We like linearity. We need more tools that, as Jeff Jarvis
has written, offer elegant organization
– as Facebook and Google do. Wave does not – at least yet. It doesn’t solve problems. If three of the geekiest geeks I know are not over the moon about it, then how will anyone else be?
Wave may stall the same way RSS unfortunately did. RSS is one of the greatest Internet
innovations of the last decade (thank you Dave
!). So why did it never take off with consumers? Simple. It didn’t solve problems that many people have. It only solved problems that some, eg info junkies, had. And it required a new way of thinking and operating. (I would argue the entire concepts of feeds only took off once Twitter and Facebook simplified it.)
But what about Gmail