Google announced today that they are ceasing development of the platform that could have revolutionized online communication as we know it. Google Wave, launched this past May after a year in beta, offered real-time messaging, threading, group discussions, and a bunch of widgets ranging from the useful to the silly.
I’ll admit it, I was pretty stoked when I heard about this thing. I had been looking for something that did what Wave promised to do, so like every other geek, I begged and pleaded for an invite back in the early beta days. When I finally got in, I was a little underwhelmed. Despite all the shiny bits that made this thing so cool, you couldn’t help but notice the sluggish interface.
Many other user had similar experiences, and in the end, there wasn’t enough adoption for Google to justify continuing to develop the product. Google says they will leave Wave as it is for those handful of enthusiasts who have embraced it, and they plan to incorporate some of the coding and features into their other services. “Wave has taught us a lot,” writes Urs Hölzle, “and we are proud of the team for the ways in which they have pushed the boundaries of computer science.”