Blog Post

Google Shared Spaces: Quick and Dirty Collaboration

The soon-to-be-defunct Google Wave (s goog) has a huge number of available gadgets, which enable users to easily add useful collaborative tools, such as whiteboards and polls, to their waves. The good news is many of the more useful Wave gadgets will now live on in Shared Spaces, a Google Labs project that allows users to create a “space” online containing a gadget and a chat window, and invite others to collaborate simply by sending them a URL. It provides a really simple way to create a temporary place to collaborate on a particular task online; ideal for those times when you’re chatting with some folks over IM and need fast access to some additional collaborative tools.

To get started, just head to the Shared Spaces gallery, pick the gadget you’d like to use and click “Create a Space.” You’ll be asked to log in using a Google, Twitter or Yahoo (s yhoo) account before being sent to your space. The bulk of the window is taken up by the gadget (like the whiteboard in the image above), with a chat pane situated at the bottom of the window. To invite anyone else into your space, you just send them the URL.

There are gadgets available for a range of basic tasks, such as drawing on a whiteboard, creating a poll, picking a suitable date for a meeting, getting feedback on ideas, creating mind maps and much more. Shared Spaces is free to use.

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