Have you ever been in a situation where you discover something really exciting, lets say a new technology, game, or food/beverage item? After experimenting with it, for a bit, you are ready to share it with all your friends. Here’s the problem… you learn that 1/3 of your friends won’t be able to enjoy it with you, because they are not located in an area where the item is available!!!!
That is exactly how I am feeling about Google Wave right now. I discovered a tool last weekend, to embed a Google Wave into my blog posts. As if that wasn’t exciting enough I also learned readers can interact with that embedded wave from within the blog post itself. Think of the endless collaboration possibilities and the traffic that could be created by using a feature like this. My mind was racing with excitement, the adrenalin was surging through my veins and then I decided to test this new functionality with different web browsers to determine how they would perform. Here is what I learned:
- Challenge #1: Reader Must Have Google Wave Account — To even view the wave that is embedded in your blog article a user must have a Google Wave account. Since the vast majority of people do not have accounts yet, and this application is still in beta testing mode, Bloggers are best advised not to use this feature until Google Wave goes public.
- Challenge #2: Internet Explorer — When I tried to load my blog page embedded with the google wave, in Internet Explorer, it would not load properly and I ended up viewing a page showing only my blog header. The only fix to this problem is to download a plugin available from Google, called Google Chrome Frame browser plugin. For those IE users already having this plugin there will not be a problem. For everyone else, they either have to switch to a different browser, (Firefox, Chrome, or Safari)download the plugin, or not read my blog.
Since 35% of my traffic at my blog comes from users of Internet Explorer, I can ill afford to risk utilizing this exciting new Google Wave feature as I may lose readers due to the incompatibility of Google Wave with “native” Internet Explorer. My hope is that at some point in the near future, either Microsoft, or Google, or perhaps both, will get their act together and play in the sandbox more effectively eliminating this problem. Until then, I (along with other bloggers) am left in the frustrating position of not being able to use what could be a pretty exciting new blogging feature.
If there is someone out there that knows of a cure to this sickness… please let me know