Google realized that people who had other places for online cooperation than GoogleWave might be reluctant to leave those places and use GoogleWave instead. So … what do you do if you’re Google? You buy your rival’s business and close it down.
At least that’s what Google just did with Etherpad, a very easy to use site where you could start an online document without having to subscribe or sign in. You could invite people to read and collaborate online, there was even an integrated chat window. No more, say the Etherpad team on their Etherpad blog:
“We are happy to announce that AppJet Inc. has been acquired by Google. The EtherPad team will continue its work on realtime collaboration by joining the Google Wave team.”
There are a great many comments on that post – most of them by (very) angry users of etherpad, and some of them recommend alternatives for Etherpad (and GWave). Here they are, in alphabetical order:
As long as GWave is in its “beta” phase and only accessible if you’ve been invited (I was, so I’ve been able to play around with it a bit), any of these alternatives has a huge advantage over GWave: It’s there, ready to be used by whoever wants to.