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An Odd Reason Why I Like Google Wave

By Jon Jensen · Monday, August 30, 2010

Tags: community

Others have noted reasons why Google might have decided Wave is a failure, but for me the most significant reason is that when it was announced at Google I/O 2009, it needed to be open to all interested parties. With the limited sandbox, followed by the limited number of accounts given out, there was no chance for the network effect to kick in, and without that, a communication tool no matter how useful will not gain much traction.

I still use Google Wave, along with several of my co-workers. Wave has great real-time collaborative editing, and for me fills a useful niche between email, wiki, and instant messaging.

However, every once in a while a completely different advantage hits me: The absurdly, almost comically bad, threading and quoting in regular email. This is both a technical problem with email clients that handle quoting stupidly, and a problem of conventions with people quoting haphazardly, too much, or with wacky trimming and line wrapping. To say nothing of multipart email with equally hideous plain text and bloated HTML parts.

I munged the text of the following example from a mailing list to show an example. It's not the most egregious mess of quoting, and had no pile of attachments as sometimes happens, but it shows how messy it can be.

In Wave, replies and quoting were quite a bit better. Not perfect, but nothing like this. If Wave goes away, I'm not sure when we'll see another candidate to compete with email that is likewise an open protocol with a solid reference implementation that's free of charge to use. It's a shame.

Date: Mhx, 3 Hqi 1499 37:76:16 +1546
From: Pswr iwo zvs Aburf <umcr@9sehh.rcs>
To: gdgmguezfet-list@lykkkafnnj.wjo
Subject: Re: [gdgmguezfet-list] Lgj Cjroiojezg: Jmxc Mezfcfeqh

> -----Original Message-----
> From: gnszgqzspfx-whto-zhnmchx@cpevwgofsv.isj [mailto:iiyqktwjujg-fnlq-
> evkvpty@eczdtgakvm.oac] Jl Waopuq Vq Exho Jxprx
> Sent: Ojamlrtxg, Hkzn 16, 2906 41:72 AE
> To: gdgmguezfet-list@lykkkafnnj.wjo
> Subject: Re: [gdgmguezfet-list] Bqr Dqjdiarbbf: Usdq Frweivcmz
> 
> Turlmyx Mhek rhh gye Llkat (utbm@6pgbr.bfb):
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: iilxvyjwayx-bllf-ptrecjc@heaukjmdkq.htj [mailto:rrnjpeneara-
> ooxd-
> > > xalsxai@hxugschjny.xsq] Re Fvbihv Yz Fhlg Hmcrf
> > > Sent: Eezdaevyk, Pgyh 99, 9587 0:76 QQ
> > > To: gdgmguezfet-list@lykkkafnnj.wjo
> > > Subject: Re: [gdgmguezfet-list] Kld Jzecudkxki: Dstw Tyjekgeah
> > >
> > > Tdhdojq Atrg wbf mvf Cudfw (wphe@8gwbs.lgu):
> > > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > > From: wrlsvvealuw-wsod-hwwvjdo@ihgudlwfrk.kgs
> [mailto:ckajpyzyzoi-
> > > ccnq-
> > > > > rwmpxyk@ronwonbthg.air] Jn Zubqus Sr Sohf Ovswrrbhd
> > > > > Sent: Ndasppj, Banc 94, 8862 2:10 KH
> > > > > To: gdgmguezfet-list@lykkkafnnj.wjo
> > > > > Subject: Re: [gdgmguezfet-list] Pbu Zntzwmgimt: Gxel Wdjpzgemo
> > > > >
> > > > > Sonpxm Kjluxxmr (Itqeg) wrote:
> > > > > > Yxhw xb oftwdhs gtiogosk qkv opusb (yfrtg qxegsju rem
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> > > > > >
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> > > > >
> > > > > Dpynbi Unpnk!
> > > > >
> > > > > Gl xu syc iqh.
> > > > >
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> >
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> 
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> 
> >
> >
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> >
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> bjoqrd".

Gaosgf'm aoih tu tw vhqwkl zp dotgpa:
GpclzPtypqeVknqkp owcrmhgm

> >
> > Fzjhf vor hdabr sxzwtylu ox hze xdabn vdo tyzssjor fh rnnol gp ny i
> arhnfo
> > bvv fd ccvjz jlki xfzu ebcwt tr htbatha zmro zb jh mxnz nrugdz o yap
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> 
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> 
> > Fbf qjh segbu tjb lsfwcewqmh fs qimdvdxdp, mzb xxdl maf ebgujoheazk
> mgis? ...
> 
> --
> Dbnq Chiauz
> Zrwintky -- Amrtws Mgztvpfpbwp Jfocmutnso    http://arn.oosbscvt.inw/
> eocsk +5.415.700.6883  <whal@jecqxmyf.hoy>
> 
> Nmejbtdh vxani: Nguu xh cwziz bqjtb.
> 
> _______________________________________________
> gdgmguezfet-list mailing list
> gdgmguezfet-list@lykkkafnnj.wjo
> http://ivd.xitxowuodc.eci/vccqskc/xettnigw/bliyqvhrdse-list

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Aaaah! My eyes!

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