Google recently announced that it would be shutting down Google Wave, at least as a standalone project. The company has now released an update on that note.
Wave.google.com will be available at least through the end of the year, the company says. In addition to that, users will be offered ways to export their Waves. This falls in line with Google's Data Liberation Front efforts, allowing users to take their data from Google services away for use in other places.
"Some of you may have seen a post on the official Google blog several weeks ago about some changes to the Wave project, and we wanted to let you know that since then we've been hard at work figuring out all the details of the next steps," says Google Wave's Lars Rasmussen. "We're looking at ways to continue and extend Wave technology in other Google products, open sourcing more of our code and providing support for our loyal users and Apps customers."
"Thank you for your outpouring of support and kind comments," says Rasmussen. "We're grateful to all the people who have been using Wave and the partners and developers who have built on and improved the technology with us. We look forward to sharing more information with you in the coming weeks."
While Wave never really caught on among the mainstream, its hard to say if it wouldn't have eventually. Google likely hopes it still will, just as an added feature to other Google products in the future (perhaps Gmail? Google Me?).
While there seemed to be a general lack of Wave enthusiasm between its launch and the announcement of its winding down, there have been a great many comments expressing sadness over its pending demise. There has even been a "Save Google Wave" site set up. More Google Wave discussion here.