Google Wave Simplified: How it Basically Works

    November 11, 2009
    Chris Crum

As you may know, Google has been sending out Google Wave invitations for a little while now. Many people are still finding these hard to come by, but others have been lucky enough to be selected and get their hands dirty.

Those who have been granted access to Google Wave have the ability to nominate people for invitation, but not directly invite people themselves. So in other words, you’re not getting in unless Google wants you to. They have to approve your nomination.

Unfortunately, that means those outside of the tech-savvy developer crowd and those who can actually access Google Wave, there is still a lot of mystery around the service. People want to know how it works.

Google Wave

The preview comes with a wave featuring a video from "Dr. Wave," or Product Manager Greg. The video is embedded below, but he points to different features within the interface, so imagine that it is placed as it is in the above screenshot.

Google Wave brings its own terminology to the table. For one, a wave itself is a collection of messages. Those messages within a wave are "blips." Blips can be edited and replied to. Anyone that is in the wave at the same time can see replies and blips being typed live in real time. That’s live. You can see the characters appear as they are typed.

If you really want to see how Google Wave works, watch this series of videos that Google provides in the preview (they’re all very short):

There are other videos that appear in the preview, but these are probably the most useful ones for showing how Wave works.

Now the version of Google Wave that people have access to is just a "preview." It doesn’t even come with a beta tag. It’s still quite early. Even parts within the preview version are clearly marked as under construction (things like key settings).

The videos provided do not begin to scratch the surface of the potential of Google Wave. With Google allowing developers to create apps or "gadgets" for it, the possibilities will likely be limitless. But as a general "getting to know you" for the common user, the videos provided pretty much explain the core of Google Wave.
Have you used Google Wave yet? Share your thoughts.

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Will Google Wave Shape the Future of Online Communication?

Is Google Wave Getting An App Store?

Google Wave Invitations Roll Out/span>