Sunday, August 8, 2010

Wave Replacement

Google's decision to discontinue Wave caught a lot of people by surprise and left many looking to alternatives. Google intended from the start that it would not be the only provider for Wave so federation was designed into the protocol at an early stage. However most of the alternatives are not quite ready for production use yet.

Novell Pulse may be the best option for enterprise users. For the casual user, there is supposed to be an free version but it is not clear when that will be available. Another option is WaveLook. And no, I'm not referring to the Outlook based client. ^^ They are working on a browser based version but it is not clear if this is just a client or a full web service, or even if it will be free.

In theory it should be possible to run one's own server and still access the federated Wave network. I'm aware of three open source servers but they are all far from complete.

FedOne, Google's reference server, is the most advanced but it still lacks support for bots and persistent storage is not built in. You have to add it yourself and since this is written in Java, that won't be so easy for me. I haven't even been able to build this server yet.

PyGoWave is another open source Wave server. It is written in Python so I could hack on it more easily but the roadblock is that it requires MySQL. Since I already have PostgreSQL running, I really don't want to run another database server. So I would need to modify PyGoWave before I can even try to get it running.

The third option is RubyOnSails. I haven't investigated this one yet, so I can't say any more about it for now. For all I know, it may be the best of the bunch.

And even if I get a Wave server running, there's still the not so minor problem of a Wave client... We live in interesting times, indeed.

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