Colayer the new Wave?

About a few hours back Google announced that it is officially closing down its collaboration tool “Google  Wave” which was launched during the Google IO in 2009. The post on Google’s official blog, Update on Wave says “We don’t plan to continue developing Wave as a standalone product”.

Coincidently, a few days back I got to meet Markus Hegi, CEO and Founder of Colayer. Colayer is a real time collaborative/collective communication platform for business organisations, and is strikingly similar to Wave. The development on Colayer began in 2000 under the name Metalayer, in 2004 it was renamed to Colayer.

I was lucky enough to get a chance to preview Colayer and understand it as a technology.  Here is my experience after first using Colayer as a tool for REAL REAL TIME communication.

The Times

When you first login to Colayer, you are placed on a page called “Times”, which itself makes Colayer better than Wave. If the name reminds you of a newspaper publisher, you are close enough to the concept of this page. The “Times” page displays the updates from different conversation that you were a part of or are subscribed to. What makes it more compelling is, that the updates are not displayed in a linear format but smartly placed around the page with respect to the context. This makes it look more organised like that of a newspaper.

Conversations on Colayer

Ease of conversations or communication is the prime intention of Colayer. Active and point to point discussions cannot be carried out on a linear discussion board. Colayer being similar to Google Wave allows tree structured conversations i.e you can reply to a particular statement at that point itself.

There is a lot more to Colayer, like illustrative labels to indicate the nature of your post in a conversation.

There are Real Real Time conversations in Colayer as well. Creating a “Meeting” within a conversation itself displays character by character chat display.

The "Drafting" label in the above page displays character by character chat display.

During an active conversation, Colayer highlights latest entries in red, while the older ones start fading to grey. Finally they collapse to “+” sign. This makes it easier to converse as, the page is not flooded with information, but older information starts collapsing to get a better view at the latest information. Saves you loads of trouble from scrolling across the page. This is why Colayer impressed me the most.

What really makes Colayer more compelling than other collaborative communication tools is its ability to understand and organise content. This is most important for such highly active communication tools, as only real time communication does not solve the problem. What we need is a tool that also organises content or contextualises it inorder to make it easy to understand. Else, there would be just a flood of information.

I believe in the statement by the Colayer Team, that Email will be dead soon. How can appending new information to a single copy of an email which goes to and fro result in efficient communication?

Visit Colayer

twitter : @colayer

Do post your comments about Colayer… 🙂