First of all What is Google Wave?
A wave is equal parts conversation and document. People can communicate and work together with richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps, and more.
A wave is shared. Any participant can reply anywhere in the message, edit the content and add participants at any point in the process. Then playback lets anyone rewind the wave to see who said what and when.
A wave is live. With live transmission as you type, participants on a wave can have faster conversations, see edits and interact with extensions in real-time.
Why is it important?
With the increasing need/demand for real-time news, search, etc. I think that Google Wave correctly pushes this notion even further to include document collaboration and communication. The co-creativity potential in Wave is enormous. Imagine co-workers collaborating on a project, a business plan, a software development project or even an internal communication document. Only time will tell where Wave will lead us; and by us, I mean everyone – because in the end everyone benefits from Google innovations, right?
Although in limited release for right now, the 100,000 invites released yesterday (Sept. 29 30) should provide a good testing base and should reveal the many new and creative ways that Wave can be used. Can’t wait to see!
Here’s a link to Mashable’s Google Wave: A Complete Guide
UPDATE: February 9, 2010 >> I’ve been using Wave at work for web development and some internal collaboration work. It’s a great tool and we are all enjoying and benefiting from the experience. Yay!