Getting Lost in a Virtual World
13 March, 2007
It’s much harder to get lost in a virtual world. Qwaq poked its head out of hiding today and released its first product: A virtual forum that enables collaborators to interact in real time. It’s not hard to imagine what an impact this new technology will have on business collaboration.
Sure there are a lot of players in business groupware. There are a lot of ways to solve the same problems, we now have video conferencing, screen sharing, remote access, group calendars, there is Skype, Grove, Notes and even Microsoft Office claims to solve group collaboration problems. So what makes Qwaq different? Well as someone that has tried all these groupware products I can tell you the answer is like asking: what is the benefit of a parachute to falling from an airplane.
Sure you can claim that everything old is new again, but not like this. Groupware today is painful. Yeah it kind of works, but participants quickly learn its limitations. The experience leaves much to be desired. The major piece that is missing from most group collaborations and presentations is you.
Qwaq puts you back in the picture. This is not presentation software, it is not powerpoint, or VNC. This is a real virtual world where you are represented, have control over your actions, can drag information off your computer and place it in a secure virtual world for all your co-workers to see. You can share applications, build 2d and 3d simulations, go off and have a private conversation, do whatever you like.
Qwaq builds on the Croquet Open Source Project. It is clear that this is a starting point. Where will it go from here? How will Qwaq change business collaboration? Ask yourself why would anyone want email when regular mail is so easy, or why would anyone want IM when email is already so fast. Will Qwaq be the next evolution in business collaboration?