Google Wave Finds New Life with Apache

Call it one last hurrah for the Zombie fad of 2010, but Google Wave -- the e-mail/instant messaging hybrid that failed to attract an audience -- has come back to life. Specifically, Google has turned over development to the open source Apache Software Foundation’s incubator program. Here’s the scoop on the newly minted Apache Wave:

If this story sounds familiar, it’s because Google Wave was only mostly dead -- the Wave in a Box software appliance project picked up right where development left off, and products like Novell Pulse (now called Novell Vibe) and SAP StreamWork are built on the Google-developed Wave Federation protocols.

According to the Google Wave Developer Blog entry, the proposal for Apache to take Wave under its wing was floated at November 2010’s Wave Protocol Summit, and it didn't take long for that idea to become reality. Since that summit, Wave's panel -- and its overall look -- has been enhanced, including working gadgets. And now Apache Wave’s development will led by a team of open source experts from companies such as Novell and Solute.

MSPmentor has to wonder: Would Google Wave have caught on if it had been marketed as a niche product instead of a consumer offering? Although the average user probably couldn’t find a use for it, Wave has a disproportionate amount of chatter from enterprise vendors and small developers.

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