Google Wave Dead : “Wave in a Box” Open Source

Back in early August Google announced they would be discontinuing development on Google Wave as a standalone effort.  Taking some of the collaborative technology and achievements on to other future projects.  Google had already open sourced quite a bit of Google Wave code and offered developer interaction through the Google Wave API and Google Wave Federated Protocol.

Was the lackluster reception of Google Wave a sign of it’s weakness or was the technology just ahead of it’s time?  In this case we enjoyed Wave and think you’ll see some the innovative ideas well into the future.  Unfortunately it just didn’t catch on.  Much like Bill Gates early efforts to promote interactive computing.  While the timing wasn’t right we’re seeing a huge shift to tablets and other touch screen devices now.  Perhaps parts of the Google Wave technology will thrive in future years as well.

Google has decided to make available an open source package with the Wave web server and client code called “Wave in a Box“.  According to the Google blog post:

This project will include:

  • an application bundle including a server and web client supporting real-time collaboration using the same structured conversations as the Google Wave system
  • a fast and fully-featured wave panel in the web client with complete support for threaded conversations
  • a persistent wave store and search implementation for the server (building on contributed patches to implement a MongoDB store)
  • refinements to the client-server protocols
  • gadget, robot and data API support
  • support for importing wave data from
  • the ability to federate across other Wave in a Box instances, with some additional configuration

We look forward to seeing how developers continue the effort to extend the existing Google Wave code. It will be interesting to see what areas might be influenced by the effort.  If you are interested in hosting your own Wave or taking a peak at the code stay tuned to the Google Wave Federation Protocol site.