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D&D On Google Wave

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the i-failed-my-invite-throw dept.

Google 118

Jon Stokes at the Opposable Thumbs blog relates his experience using Google Wave as a platform for Dungeons and Dragons — the true test of success for any new communications technology. A post at Spirits of Eden lists some of Wave's strengths for gaming. Quoting: "The few games I'm following typically have at least three waves: one for recruiting and general discussion, another for out-of-character interactions ('table talk'), and the main wave where the actual in-character gaming takes place. Individual players are also encouraged to start waves between themselves for any conversations that the GM shouldn't be privy to. Character sheets can be posted in a private wave between a player and the GM, and character biographies can go anywhere where the other players can get access to them. The waves are persistent, accessible to anyone who's added to them, and include the ability to track changes, so they ultimately work quite well as a medium for the non-tactical parts of an RPG. A newcomer can jump right in and get up-to-speed on past interactions, and a GM or industrious player can constantly maintain the official record of play by going back and fixing errors, formatting text, adding and deleting material, and reorganizing posts."

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118 comments

Kinda sounds like (4, Insightful)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921409)

IRC (sans logging)

"The few games I'm following typically have at least three channels: one for recruiting and general discussion, another for out-of-character interactions ('table talk'), and the main channel where the actual in-character gaming takes place. Individual players are also encouraged to private message between themselves for any conversations that the GM shouldn't be privy to. Character sheets can be posted in a private message between a player and the GM, and character biographies can go anywhere where the other players can get access to them."

I'm sorry but I still dont get all the hype, to me it's just a bastard child of IRC and a Wiki.

Re:Kinda sounds like (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921429)

And IRC is just a fancy version of talk. Durrrrrrrr.......

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29927747)

no. IRC is just Multiplayer Notepad.

Re:Kinda sounds like (5, Insightful)

twoshortplanks (124523) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921449)

I'm sorry but I still dont get all the hype, to me it's just a bastard child of IRC and a Wiki.

Yes! That's exactly what it is. You say that like this development of new technology is a bad thing. Do you need to hand in your geek card?

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921479)

I think his point was that it isn't new technology at all.

Re:Kinda sounds like (3, Insightful)

dangitman (862676) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921629)

That's a fairly pointless thing to say. One could argue that there's been no new technology since the wheel... everything since is just a derivative. Why does it even matter if it's a new technology or not? Something doesn't have to be new or completely original to be useful. In fact, the best technologies tend not to be the first iteration of a new concept, but a much later one.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

SleepingWaterBear (1152169) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923553)

That's a fairly pointless thing to say. One could argue that there's been no new technology since the wheel... everything since is just a derivative. Why does it even matter if it's a new technology or not? Something doesn't have to be new or completely original to be useful. In fact, the best technologies tend not to be the first iteration of a new concept, but a much later one.

Well, if Google wave does *nothing* that IRC couldn't, then the first question that comes to mind for me is "why is slashdot wasting my time with all these articles about redundant technology?" The GP isn't saying there's anything wrong with Google Wave, he's just wondering what all the fuss is about. I'm sort of wondering about that myself.

Re:Kinda sounds like (3, Interesting)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924609)

It's threaded IRC, with search, but without any admin controls (once a person is there it's impossible to silence or kick them, and indeed impossible for them to leave [f/x: hums the tune to hotel california]).

It's fairly limited right now - I bet part of the reason that these RP events use multiple waves is because you have to - once you go over about 350 posts the wave slows down to the point of unusability and you have to start a new one.

Wave is so beta it's difficult to know what it will be when it's finished (at the moment stuff breaks regularly.. which is OK because it's most populated by geeks who are used to stuff breaking). What I would say is don't believe the hype otherwise you'll be disappointed.

Re:Kinda sounds like (4, Interesting)

hclewk (1248568) | more than 4 years ago | (#29926025)

Well, a backhoe does nothing that a shovel couldn't... It's just a lot better at some things (moving lots of dirt). I use wave on a regular basis for project collaboration. One of the best things about wave is that you don't have to respond in a linear fashion. So, this is a conversation that could happen in IRC:

Sally: When I [description of what she did] I get the error message [some random error message]
Sally: Also, if I [description of what she did] the program [description of how the program fails]
Jack: Well, on that first issue, what happens if you [some thing to try]
Jack: And for that second issue.....

With wave, jack can respond directly to each of sally's messages (or even a particular part of a message) so Sally knows exactly what Jack is talking about without Jack having to clarify. As Jack finish up things from his to-do list, he just deletes the threads from the wave, as they are always accessible via Replay (which lets you see all previous states of the wave), keeping the wave nice and clean. And if Sally isn't online when jack deletes something, it will be obvious to her what Jack deleted (it's marked with strikeout, and is removed after the next time she views the wave) when she comes back online so she knows what he's finished.

Not to mention that there are gadgets and robots and waves are embeddable (though the apis are in early stages at the moment).

Does IRC do all that?

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29927265)

Maybe others want to know about other technology and don't want to use IRC. Get over yourself.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922059)

Wave feat:

Players with 5 or more ranks in wikimaster gain a +2 synergy bonus on checks to maintain a chat conversation. Those with 5 or more ranks in chatmonger gain a +2 synergy bonus on checks to wikify a discussion.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922795)

3.5 is soo obsolete

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

emkyooess (1551693) | more than 4 years ago | (#29926507)

Obsoleted only by Pathfinder...

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29927857)

Some of us don't like fixing old windows by nailing on shingles...

Re:Kinda sounds like (4, Insightful)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921561)

it's not really the development of a new technology, it's the hybridisation of everything that's come before - IRC, IM, Wiki's, Email - into one flexible platform. It's certainly an interesting idea, but what it needs is the ability to forcibly narrow down the parameters so you can *if you want* lock it into a pure Wiki, or IRC clone or whatever.

It might, however, be one of those kid in a candy shop style affairs where the kid can have as much candy as he wants, but doesn't know where to start, eats everything, pukes and makes a mess.

Re:Kinda sounds like (3, Funny)

sorak (246725) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922551)

It might, however, be one of those kid in a candy shop style affairs where the kid can have as much candy as he wants, but doesn't know where to start, eats everything, pukes and makes a mess.

That is a great analogy for the internet itself. The next time my mother asks why web pages are so cluttered, I am going to have to remember that.

Re:Kinda sounds like (2, Insightful)

Beale (676138) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922573)

... And then you *learn* and don't puke up the next time. Allowing users to lock modes would mean that a lot of people would never find out what's interesting and new about the system. You might end up with a horrible mess once, but then you can look at what you did wrong.

Re:Kinda sounds like (2, Interesting)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922709)

I think Google Wave is a great platform but adds nothing for roleplaying. It even has an unwanted feature : logs accessible to newcomers. I used to game through IRC, creating a channel for each room and a general discussion channel. Players going from room to romm to meet people or act separately. It was crucial that when arriving in a room, players did not know what happened before as the game (Amber DRPG) focuses a lot on PvP conspiracies.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

Thugthrasher (935401) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923267)

So it adds nothing to your particular style of roleplaying, at least in that game. In a game where the players aren't constantly keeping secrets from each other, it's fine. Hell, it'd probably be fine in that game if you had players who can separate OOC knowledge with IC knowledge. It definitely could have its uses at times, but like anything else, it has its flaws.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

virtualflesh (1438407) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923581)

IMO, technology isn't bad or good - it's common or cool. Technology that is common (i.e., uncool) loses it's appealing luster when everybody thinks it's cool and when the majority of them neither know why it's cool nor have interest in how it works. True coolness comes when something not previously possible becomes possible, when those using it know how it works and exploit it, and when those not using have no interest in how it works.

More like forums, really (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921473)

Pretty much all of the described things (three separate threads. Private messages. Logs.) are exactly as they would be in PbP (play by post, usually on a forum) game. In addition, RPG oriented forums (Myth-Weavers, GiantITP...) often have dicerollers, character sheet managers, etc... Those could be added as gadgets here too, I guess. But nothing there seems revolutionary as in offering anything new.

I think that the point is easiness of use compared to other options and stuff like that. Rather than letting you do something new, wave lets you do all the old stuff in one program instead of having multiple ones. One useful scenario for this could be: A PbP game that is played normally on forums, but on wave you see "Ah, those two guys are online now", send them a message "Want to do some playing in real time?" and begin chatting with them. Much easier than telling them to fire up IRC, connect to a server, etc. (especially if they aren't "computer people").

So I could see wave potentially being useful for this (like many other things). There just has been too much hype about it so people first act more among the lines of "This will cure cancer and HIV and everything!" and then go "Uh, this isn't THAT awesome. We'll need to desperately look for things in which this is superior to other mediums!" instead of going "Oh, a new alternative for forums and chats. Neat. I'm sure we'll come up with some interesting uses for this over time."

I have been designing a program to play DnD over the internet lately. One with battlemaps, chats, dicerollers, stuff like that. I am aware of OpenRPG and similar products but I'm not completely happy with them (the UI, the functionality, a lot of things) so I've decided to write my own one. I think that writing a wave plugin for the missing stuff instead might be worth giving some thought.

Re:More like forums, really (2, Informative)

etore (1667647) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922393)

Try Fantasy Grounds [fantasygrounds.com] first though. It's got realistic dice, tools, maps the works for pretty much any major pen & paper RPG since there are quite a few rulesets available.

Re:More like forums, really (3, Informative)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922851)

Try Fantasy Grounds [fantasygrounds.com] first though. It's got realistic dice, tools, maps the works for pretty much any major pen & paper RPG since there are quite a few rulesets available.

Why try proprietary software when there's an excellent Free Software option [rptools.net] that you can customize to your needs?

Re:More like forums, really (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29923723)

Yeah, that's what I was saying. Rptools is excellent as I mentioned in my Above Post [slashdot.org].

Re:More like forums, really (2, Interesting)

KidTHC (95096) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923755)

I have used MapTool to RP with friends that have moved away. It works great. If any of you are looking for a solution and haven't tried it, I highly recommend it. The one thing that would be nice with Wave is the persistence factor. It would be convenient to keep game information and materials in one place were everyone can access the same versions.

Re:More like forums, really (0, Redundant)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924677)

Why try proprietary software when there's an excellent Free Software option that you can customize to your needs?

Because not everyone is a programmer. Some of us just want to play.

Re:More like forums, really (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924821)

Most of RPTool users, including myself, are not programmers

Give it a try

Re:More like forums, really (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29925005)

No.


Stop thrusting your free crap on me. Sheesh.

Re:More like forums, really (1)

digitalPhant0m (1424687) | more than 4 years ago | (#29926429)

I have been designing a program to play DnD over the internet lately. One with battlemaps, chats, dicerollers, stuff like that.

Looks like we're re-inventing MUDs now.

Re:Kinda sounds like (3, Insightful)

Jessta (666101) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921477)

The hype works like this,
1. Replace IRC with IM(msn,yahoo etc.) in the user population which is more about one-to-one conversations and terrible at group conversations. These users are now completely unaware of IRC and are stuck with email for one-to-many communication.
2. Next you sell them various ways they can get back the one-to-many communication method(facebook,myspace,google wave)
3.???
4. PROFIT!

It's really that simple, everything old is new again...oh and now it's in your web browser so you can use those CPU cycles you're missing out on when your CPU would otherwise be sleeping.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29926101)

Well, whereas instant-messaging chat programs are terrible for group discussions, IRC is terrible for everything.

Re:Kinda sounds like (4, Interesting)

GryMor (88799) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921495)

Persistent wikified irc with integrated permissions management?

That, right there, is a killer app.

Re:Kinda sounds like (5, Insightful)

Leolo (568145) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921909)

With version control, play-back capability, distributed storage, and a well documented pluggin API.

Wave blows me away.

The fact that so many people chime in with "I don't get it" is probably an indication of how revolutionary it is.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0, Redundant)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922103)

It's not revolutionary. All the things you describe have already existed before. The only thing Google did was pull an Apple and put it all in a cute little box.

And *that* is probably where a lot of people, myself included, "Don't get it."

So they wrapped a bunch of stuff that existed already and some already existed together, why are we hailing this as the second coming of jesus?

Re:Kinda sounds like (2, Insightful)

ruemere (1148095) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922149)

Synergy. User-friendly integration of components allows for delivery in a single package.

Hmm. Tolkien and the concept of the Ring come to mind, too.

Regards,
Ruemere

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

pwfffff (1517213) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923523)

What a useful, insightful, and entirely correct comment you've made! Google did indeed simply take one old IRC server, two or three Wikipedia backups, and a printed copy of the Winamp plugin API, throw them in a blender, and pour the result into a 'cute little box'!

I'm with you man, I can't believe other people here actually think they did some kind of work on this. If you open a Wave page and view the source it even has all the HTML comments left in from the Wiki template they used!!!

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29924017)

We started with the wheel. Then we got the water wheel, water turning a turbine to do work, well that's not new, just an application of the wheel. Then we boiled the water, and had steam turn the turbine instead, which is just boiling the water first. Meanwhile we had horse drawn carriages, which is just a logical extension of the wheel. Then we had steam powered horseless carriages (most ran on track, and were called trains, but there were a few that did not), you know just replacing the horse with steam engines that already existed, nothing new. Then we replaced a gas combustion engine, which is just doing the same thing in a better way. Then we added wings and made them lighter, which really is only a minor change -- the combination of a car and kite really. And so on...

There is nothing new under the heavens. We've only gotten as far as we have by standing on the shoulders of giants.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

Joren (312641) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923721)

The fact that so many people chime in with "I don't get it" is probably an indication of how revolutionary it is.

...or of it just being poorly articulated.

I'm not a Wave hater, but a lot of the coverage I read initially was really vague about what it actually is. Even after the .com bubble, it seems a lot of people are willing to make the assumption that vague vibes of goodness and a lack of details makes for something revolutionary - if it can't be explained well, then it must be cool.

In this case though it turns out Wave actually is cool. It just needs to be explained better, and we're beginning to see some of that implementation now.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924919)

The fact that so many people chime in with "I don't get it" is probably an indication of how revolutionary it is.

Or maybe it's a case of The Emperor's New Clothes [wikipedia.org]. Those who are chiming in with "I get it, I get it!" are praising his amazing new suit...
 
Relatively speaking, you have one person who has actually tried it, and just here on Slashdot, a thousand people who are proclaiming "I Get It! It's Wonderful". How can you Get or know to be Wonderful, something you haven't experienced and only know of via press releases and hype?
 
Seriously. Comments like the one quoted above make me suspicious as hell, especially given the prevalence of the Cult Of Google here on Slashdot. Google Has Spoken and His true believers are willingly going forth to spread His Word. By proclaiming how they Get It, they prove their faith and spread the Word among the unbelievers.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

Tarsir (1175373) | more than 4 years ago | (#29925579)

How can you Get, or know to be Wonderful, something you haven't experienced [...] ?

Thanks to this breakthrough new technology called rationalism [wikipedia.org] it is now possible to know things without directly experiencing them.

I'll give you a quick tutorial: The original claim is that Wave is an aggregation of various existing technologies. You claim that it is impossible to know how useful this will be without using it. Some intrepid souls, however, are reflecting that the existing technologies which Wave aggregates all have drawbacks, and reasoning that by combining them, Google has eliminated, or at least mitigated, these drawbacks. Reasoning really is an amazing thing. You should try it out sometime.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#29926541)

What makes you think I haven't tried reasoning? Oh, right - I don't echo the Gospel of Google, and that is prima facie evidence that I haven't tried reasoning or that my reasoning is by definition wrong.
 
You are correct, in that by reasoning based on indirect evidence one can reach a valid conclusion. If and only if the evidence used in reaching that conclusion is itself valid. GIGO [wikipedia.org] applied to data processing done in wetware as it does in software. When your inputs consist only of hype, assumptions, and accounts largely by those inclined to praise - that alone is sufficient to question the validity of the conclusion.
 
Doubly so when you note the proponents of a position are ignoring valid evidence. In this case, further downthread, you'll note a few reports of problems - explained away by proponents as being a natural consequence of early release software. This ignores past and ongoing evidence that with Google, WYSIWYG. Their early releases are often largely what ships, updates come only at great intervals and the underlying paradigm is rarely questioned.
 
One can also illuminate the issue by substituting other companies names in place 'Google' and modeling the probable results.
 
It is also entirely possible to take the same limited subset of (as I point out above) questionable data and reach a very different conclusion by incorporating different assumptions.
 
For example, take your assertion:
 
 

The original claim is that Wave is an aggregation of various existing technologies. You claim that it is impossible to know how useful this will be without using it. Some intrepid souls, however, are reflecting that the existing technologies which Wave aggregates all have drawbacks, and reasoning that by combining them, Google has eliminated, or at least mitigated, these drawbacks.

One can equally reason that the technologies only have drawbacks because the users insist on using a screwdriver as a paintbrush - and complaining when they gouge the wall. However, one can argue that combining a paintbrush with a screwdriver yields a tool that is likely gouge your arm in paintbrush mode and which is in it's rack drying when you need a screwdriver. (And the brush head gets in your way when trying to get the screwdriver in a tight spot anyhow.) Or you end up with a tool like the Leatherman - cool, and useful in some circumstances, but when you want to do real work you reach for the real tools.
 
In other words, their conclusions are based on reasoning that requires treating an assumption as fact. It's quite valid to show that if you use a different assumptions you reach a different conclusion, and thus question their conclusion and the motivations behind it.
 
In other words, sometimes what you mistakenly believe in your haste is evidence of lack of thought is in fact quite the opposite - evidence that apparent the lack of thought is yours.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29925357)

yeah, sounds great... but I have noone to wave with :(

Re:Kinda sounds like (2, Interesting)

nifboy (659817) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921501)

Well, yeah. That's the point. It's basically IRC with a centralized location for storing pictures, char sheets, combat maps, etc. I mean, sure, you could set up your own wiki and your own IRC channel and have them both open at the same time.

Re:Kinda sounds like (3, Interesting)

loganrapp (975327) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921559)

Presentation is everything, these days. Being able to display your character sheets to everyone while you're on a more real-time version of IRC with group logging and archival is a big step forward.

Swap character sheets for "business plans," and you can see the potential, here.

There's also the convenience factor. It does everything for you. Unlike IRC, you can edit within the Wave itself. Logs don't have to be outputted to a .txt file before you can edit them. You just do it right there.

What'll be interesting is if/when Skype can be added to it in a gadget. VoIP with audio/video chat, the ability to display documents to an entire group, and to collaboratively write something with real-time editing.

If you want to say it's just a repackaging of IRC and a Wiki, sure, go right ahead. It's just shaping up to be a very well done and potentially ubiquitous repackaging.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

koiransuklaa (1502579) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921811)

how do you get more real-time than IRC?

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921911)

Well, you could have people's letters appear as they type.. or go around to their house and talk face to face.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921963)

The first part it does automatically, and has webcams for the second.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

dr00p (56154) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922597)

you have have keystroke updates instead of waiting for the entire line to be inputed

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922863)

Like the old Unix Command Talk

Bah. Back the old days we had chat and it was better too. Full split screen chat. You typed on top the person you were chatting with was on the bottom. Real time you saw what they typed there misspellings and there typing speed.

There was also versions of this for BBS's it was great because you can see how computer literate the people were by their typing

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29925935)

Isn't that why Google has its Talk service? They don't need Skype...

Re:Kinda sounds like (2, Insightful)

AniVisual (1373773) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921567)

The hype is because it has no technical jargon words. The media gets a headache when it encounters technical jargon. The hype is because it has marketing jargon. The media falls head-over-heels when it encounters marketing jargon.

Re:Kinda sounds like (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924959)

Except, it's not just the media who are hyping this. Look at the comments on the various Slashdot stories about Wave and you can see how the followers of the Cult of Google are willingly hyping this as well.

Re:Kinda sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921843)

That's cause your so l33t you still use pine.

Re:Kinda sounds like (4, Insightful)

osgeek (239988) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923607)

I still don't get it. Cell phones are just regular phone but without the wires.

I still don't get it. The web is just like gopher/ftp but you with pictures.

I still don't get it. The iPhone is just a bastard child of a cell phone and a pda.

What you don't get is that almost all new products that really take off are amalgamations of pre-existing technologies. Yeah, Google Wave is just a really neat way to put together IRC, Wiki, and Email. Its impact will be huge. A couple of years from now, even your mom will be talking about sending you a Wave. Numerous imitators and Wave server implementations will be around. Waves and wave-like concepts will be omnipresent.

Great! (5, Funny)

declain (1338567) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921509)

I put on my robe and wizard hat.

If the grues don't get you, the gazebos will! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29921683)

Watch out for killer gazebos!

Re:The killer gazebo, FYI, no, not you, them. (5, Funny)

MRe_nl (306212) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921901)

ED: You see a well groomed garden. In the middle, on a small hill, you see a gazebo.
ERIC: A gazebo? What color is it?
ED: [pause] It's white, Eric.
ERIC: How far away is it?
ED: About 50 yards.
ERIC: How big is it?
ED: [pause] It's about 30 ft across, 15 ft high, with a pointed top.
ERIC: I use my sword to detect good on it.
ED: It's not good, Eric. It's a gazebo.
ERIC: [pause] I call out to it.
ED: It won't answer. It's a gazebo.
ERIC: [pause] I sheathe my sword and draw my bow and arrows. Does it respond in any way?
ED: No, Eric, it's a gazebo!
ERIC: I shoot it with my bow. [roll to hit] What happened?
ED: There is now a gazebo with an arrow sticking out of it.
ERIC: [pause] Wasn't it wounded?
ED: OF COURSE NOT, ERIC! IT'S A GAZEBO!
ERIC: [whimper] But that was a +3 arrow!
ED: It's a gazebo, Eric, a GAZEBO! If you really want to try to destroy it, you could try to chop it with an axe, I suppose, or you could try to burn it, but I don't know why anybody would even try. It's a @#$%!! gazebo!
ERIC: [long pause. He has no axe or fire spells.] I run away.
ED: [thoroughly frustrated] It's too late. You've awakened the gazebo. It catches you and eats you.
ERIC: [reaching for his dice] Maybe I'll roll up a fire-using mage so I can avenge my Paladin.

True Lies (0)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921595)

"a platform for Dungeons and Dragons — the true test of success for any new communications technology"

"Can you roll 8 or better on 2d6 so you can hear me now? Good."

d00d! grab your manuals and head for Hat Creek, CA. The Allen Telescope Array needs to be tested so it can tell when it's picking up alien transmissions. We're going to need to know whether to consider them monsters or non-player characters.

Re:True Lies (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922385)

"a platform for Dungeons and Dragons -- the true test of success for any new communications technology" d00d! grab your manuals and head for Hat Creek, CA. The Allen Telescope Array needs to be tested so it can tell when it's picking up alien transmissions. We're going to need to know whether to consider them monsters or non-player characters.

Or players. Thousands of years ago, Xenu the Galactic Overlord broadcast his D&D games that he played with a group of precognitive servants. If you tune in with the right equipment, maybe you'll be the mind(s) the precogs touched, so you can "play" D&D with Xenu.

Not going to catch on (3, Informative)

thenextstevejobs (1586847) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921659)

Those of us with beta accounts are familiar with the fact that its slow, clumsy and unexciting.

Sort of sad how everyone is shitting themselves because they found ONE decent use for Wave. A dedicated program for D&D, which dedicated players would rather use than a general tool shoehorned into D&D and stuck in the damn browser, would be much better.

I used to like Google's products because they were simple and responsive. This is what I would expect out of a startup, not a company with resources and experience like Google.

They've probably already realized this is a failed experiment, and they'd be better off shoving it under the rug now than pushing forward as if this is the next Google Search or Mail.

Re:Not going to catch on (4, Funny)

wall0159 (881759) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921829)

"Those of us with beta accounts are familiar with the fact that its slow, clumsy and unexciting. "

can this be rephrased as:
"Too slow. Steeper learning curve than email. Lame."
?

In my humble opinion. (3, Interesting)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921921)

The google web Wave client is tryiing too much things, and give the feel of a alfa client, with the speed a bloated "v14.0"-ish app.

1) It will be better if it try less things. FIRST. Using waves to configure things, is like using emails to store emails settings. Is just a bad idea. It could be cool, and good for devs (eat your own dog food), but is bad for users. Since the use of waves is slow, changing settings is slow. A normal interface, like the one that Gmail have for his setup details, will be much faster and easy to use, also more "normal". Future versions of Wave could have something different, but for the current version is just too much. This wave client is trying too strong to be a 2020 client, and need to be a 2009 client.

2). Again, is 2009. For most people Wave is slow, It just do too much things automatically. Opening and closing waves sould be much faster. It feel like everything is automatically autoupdating all the time. Thats sould stop, and only the active wave be this active. Maybe broadcast the "modified" flag. A future 2020 version could get that feature back, once our computers and the whole internet is much faster.

3). Too much!!!.. Is too much!!. Wave is complex beyond needing a manual, It almost need special training. It seems some features are unwanted, but present everywhere. ..more about this soon..

Who created a wave?. It seems a wave lack the "headers" of a email. It sould have a way to know the name of the wave creator (the OP in forum parlance), the date of such creating, and other stuff. The subject/title of a room, sould probably be "manual" and not "automagical".

Why I can't download it to a file? say a PDF.

Why I can't open a wave in areal fullscreen way, withouth the web MDI interface?.

Its need more control over a wave. Like... force part of it read-only, or stop more people to join.

How its now.. what If I say something sensitive, and some guy invited the wrong person? ok, you can do that with email, but here seems something that can be like more casual. It just don't trusth a wave, because It feels public, without a way to stop that. It would be "easy" to block that.

What are the limits of a bot? can a bot that inject a SWF steal my account details? Facebook seems a bit more "safer" than this. Bots are like too "misterious". Bots sould have a special way to be identified from humans, and a dedicated page with (maybe) commands. Hell... PEOPLE need a simple profile page.

LOTS OF STUFF...

I think Wave has been released too early. Its still a technological preview of a future technology, but is not usable today for what I have commented. I love to have it available, has a toy, but I have not found a real use, nor my friends seems inclined to use it.

A faster client (desktop based?) will be giganteous step.

Re:In my humble opinion. (3, Insightful)

cfc-12 (1195347) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922637)

I think Wave has been released too early. Its still a technological preview of a future technology, but is not usable today for what I have commented. I love to have it available, has a toy, but I have not found a real use, nor my friends seems inclined to use it.

They released it early so they could get feedback on it to see what needs to be improved for the final release. Your post is probably exactly the kind of feedback they're looking for; have you submitted it to them as well as us?

Re:In my humble opinion. (1)

renoX (11677) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922753)

>what If I say something sensitive, and some guy invited the wrong person?

Even if you had control on Wave itself, what could prevent the same guy taking screenshots and putting them on the web?
That said having control on the one who can reply to a wave is a good idea, to prevent trolls.

>Bots sould have a special way to be identified from humans,

It's probably a good default but those who want 'anonymous bots' will find a way to make them (not too hard: script the client) so I don't think it's a big issue.

Re:In my humble opinion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29923007)

It's spelled "should", big guy.

Re:In my humble opinion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29926705)

Addressing your points in the order you posted them:

1) I don't know what setting you are talking about my profile settings are all on a separate google profile page.
2) It's slow because it's in active development with google changing things all the time, they probably don't have as many servers dedicated to it as they really want or need yet because people are supposed to understand that things may still be clunky in the preview. I do agree that you should be able to set custom update settings and my understanding is that they are in the works but that it's easiest to default to real time and scale it back later
3) I agree that google should clue people in to things like public@ and with:public searches, and all the keyboard shortcuts instead of you having to search around but THIS IS A PREVIEW I'm sure once it goes public there will be lots of nice how to posts and instruction videos.

The wave creator is the first user in the wave, I thought this was obvious. The first line of a wave, in bold, is the subject line. If you want to know dates I think playback should show it.

You can download waves as web-archives you might be able to then print that to a pdf. give them some time, I don't think wave to pdf is high priority, you might be able to make a bot to do it if you actually cared.

ACLs are coming, I know it's a free for all right now but ACLs are coming. I think control over who gets added should come with the ACLs but even so you should not add anyone you don't trust to keep info private, JUST LIKE EMAIL OR ANYTHING ELSE.

How does a bot swf steal passwords, I need to see a proof of concept before I take this seriously.

If you don't like the PREVIEW release then GTFO. Give your account to someone who will use it because there are lots of people who would kill for a wave account right now.

It's an open standard, you can write whatever client you want to interface with wave.

Re:Not going to catch on (3, Informative)

D Ninja (825055) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922267)

Those of us with beta accounts are familiar with the fact that its slow, clumsy and unexciting.

Well, it's an alpha (preview, in Google terms) account first off.

Second, I do agree that it feels slow and a bit clumsy. Of course, I'm willing to forgive that because it's alpha. I realize not everybody will be.

As for its uses, however, well, I don't want to speak to that until more people join it. Right now, it's kind of pointless just to chat back and forth between two people. However, I can see huge advantages in project planning and management, developer discussion, etc. Nothing is worse than having to wade through conversations in e-mails that are scattered across multiple threads and I can't figure out what the heck is going on. And that's just one use that I can think of. I know there are plenty more (especially as you start bringing in gadgets).

Yeah, Wave was sold pretty well, but realize that not that many people are using it yet. It still has a long way to go before it is considered "complete" by anybody's standards, much less Google's.

Re:Not going to catch on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922321)

It's gonna be lightning fast as soon as they turn the damn logging off.

Re:Not going to catch on (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922391)

"Those of us with beta accounts are familiar with the fact that its slow, clumsy, and unexciting"

Please don't post drivel that tries to paint broad strokes about a platform like this. On Chrome, I've found the platform very responsible (especially over the last few weeks). The only major exception being for ridiculously large waves. Unlike email, it takes time to fetch all the little bits and pieces of data and assemble them. The wave protocol needs to have a "check-in" or "lock" point where it just generates the whole wave once it reaches a certain point. That's really been the ONLY part that I've had trouble with.

I've found Wave exceptionally useful for small and mid-sized team coordination. It's better than Chat, and a hell of a lot better than Email. Its a meeting that takes notes itself (and let's face it, despite how important this is who actually makes the time to do it?).

Is it perfect? Absolutely not. Most of these problems are minimal, and hopefully will be solved with some effort on Google's part. However, more to the point is the fact that the entire PLATFORM is open sources. Hell, there's even a java text-based client that ships with the FedOne server. Since this is Slashdot, and we're all open source minded here, I'll simply say: "Don't like Google's client? Stop being retard, get the source and MAKE YOUR OWN."

Wave is an amazing protocol and a worthwhile technology exploration. It would benefit the community if people actually stopped making excuses and started participating in efforts to help move the technology forward.

Re:Not going to catch on (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 4 years ago | (#29925317)

To me, the best part about Google's wave isn't that it's an omnibus tool that's being touted as the next revolution in communication, it's that it's an omnibus tool they've already released the specs and such for in a way that someone implementing it DOESN'T need to stick to Google's hosted service or even a web browser.

And as a result, if someone had the intent to, they could roll this into a dedicated RPG tool with a desktop client and the other bells and whistles.

What I see Google Wave to be is a demo for the product, just as I see Jabber.org as a demo for XMPP.

Colossal Cave Adventure (2, Interesting)

sfraggle (212671) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921689)

In a related note, over the past couple of weeks I have been porting Colossal Cave Adventure [wikimedia.org] to Google Wave. Send a ping to colossal-wave@appspot.com to play :-)

Re:Colossal Cave Adventure (1)

Jerry Smith (806480) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922271)

In a related note, over the past couple of weeks I have been porting Colossal Cave Adventure [wikimedia.org] to Google Wave. Send a ping to colossal-wave@appspot.com to play :-)

Brilliant! You, Sir, just ruined my weekend, for I will have to play this! Thank you!!

Re:Colossal Cave Adventure (1)

illumin8 (148082) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924221)

You know what would be awesome? Using Wave for multiplayer, real-time Nethack... I pray to god someone will start that project.

Bard Bot (1)

joelpt (21056) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921761)

I've written a simple text-adventure Wave bot that lets you play zcode games -- including some of the old Infocom classics (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Leather Goddesses of Phobos) along with a few choice picks from http://ifarchive.org./ [ifarchive.org.] (More games soon.) Just add bardbot@appspot.com to a wave to play.

Privacy and the real-time web (5, Informative)

giladpn (1657217) | more than 4 years ago | (#29921987)

Google Wave has one huge advantage IMO.

Lots of us get along fine with email, for 1:1 and 1:n communication, mailing lists, the works. So OK email misses the "wall" or "real time web" effect were everybody can see what everyone else is posting. But email works.
And the really big deal about email is the standards - I can use outlook yesterday, gmail today, and yahoo mail tomorrow. I can move my stuff among vendors and keep my stuff from years back. Because everyone must stick to standards.

Trouble is there is an insidious conspiracy to make email uncool. Its led by the hordes of Facebook-ers and lately Tweet-ers. Like, I mean, do you really want to spend your life tweet-ing your latest embarrasing whatever to the world at large? But lets face it - the pressure is on bigtime. If you're not there you don't exist. Talk about peer pressure - the most obvious success of the social realtime web is the use of peer pressure to force everyone on board.:-(

Now along comes wave. Google Wave is basically email on steroids, with a "wall / real time web" capability thrown in. You can be totally private or you can be totally public or any combo in between. Nice. And oh yes you also get media richness.
And the Facebook-ers and Tweet-ers can't claim its uncool; actually you can one-up 'em - they're old hat.

Finally. Privacy is back (at least when you want it).
Now they just need to reintroduce standards. Is anyone listening?

Re:Privacy and the real-time web (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922285)

Before it was even released, Wave had already done far more for standardization than Facebook and Twitter combined over the entirety of their existence. The protocols [waveprotocol.org] are all there for anyone to implement (with the explicit exception of patent trolls [waveprotocol.org]).

Re:Privacy and the real-time web (2, Interesting)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922517)

Now along comes wave. Google Wave is basically email on steroids, with a "wall / real time web" capability thrown in. You can be totally private or you can be totally public or any combo in between. Nice. And oh yes you also get media richness.

1. XML-based protocol? Check.
2. Obfuscated? Check.
3. Needlessly complex? Check.
4. Proprietary/commercially based? Check. (The better to "de-commoditise protocols," my dear)

5. Replaces a perfectly good, pre-existing protocol [irc.org], when there's absolutely no sane reason (other than the aforementioned commercialism, of course) to do so? Check.

6. (The icing on the cake; this one ALWAYS shows up) Uses the brainless, meaningless, totally subjective, rage-inducing, corporate-suit-spawned "richness," argument in order to sell it to people who don't have the necessary intelligence to be able to see through this crap? Check.

Go ahead, call me a troll, mod me down, accuse me of beating up Santa Claus at Christmas, etc. I'm saying stuff you won't want to hear. If there's one thing that is a truly unforgiveable sin around here, it's voicing unpopular opinions.

Re:Privacy and the real-time web (3, Insightful)

dkf (304284) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922991)

5. Replaces a perfectly good, pre-existing protocol [irc.org], when there's absolutely no sane reason (other than the aforementioned commercialism, of course) to do so? Check.

It's actually XMPP under the hood, which has been around for a few years before Google started getting excited about it. XMPP's jabber application has a number of advantages over IRC (notably the encoding of metadata is nowhere near as horrific) but that's hardly the only use for it.

Doesn't make any sense as a replacement for email though. Maybe as a way to replace POP or IMAP, but SMTP? The advantage of SMTP is its universality (yeah, even Exchange and Notes allegedly...) which means it is great when you need to communicate with someone who is using a different software stack to you.

Re:Privacy and the real-time web (3, Insightful)

Zerth (26112) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923003)

You do know that the wave protocol is open and designed to run on multiple servers, same as email/irc? Apparently you are unaware that there already exist other non-google wave servers.

If you're not a troll, then you are just ignorant.

Re:Privacy and the real-time web (0, Flamebait)

pwfffff (1517213) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923869)

1. Don't be fucking stupid.
2. Obfuscated? Don't. Be. Fucking. Stupid. http://www.waveprotocol.org/ [waveprotocol.org]
3. If you're afraid of complex things, you really shouldn't be on the internet. I imagine you'd be happy living in a tent on the side of the mountain, but us societal folk like our technology.
4. In what way is this proprietary? You can make your own server/client RIGHT NOW. The ENTIRE SPEC is online. Even their implementation is OPEN SOURCE. DON'T BE FUCKING STUPID.

5. "The waves are persistent, accessible to anyone who's added to them, and include the ability to track changes, so they ultimately work quite well as a medium for the non-tactical parts of an RPG. A newcomer can jump right in and get up-to-speed on past interactions, and a GM or industrious player can constantly maintain the official record of play by going back and fixing errors, formatting text, adding and deleting material, and reorganizing posts." IDK what IRC client YOU have, but please link me to it so I can take part in these awesome benefits! It can also do video/voice chat, right?

6. Another prejudice! Wooo! Some people would be ashamed to let the world know that they think that one, single word typed by one, single marketing droid determines the overall quality of the finished product... but not you! Fuck in-depth analysis! All you need is ONE WORD!

I know you're so freakishly averse to change that you cry every time the sun comes up, but maybe you should try actually thinking about things with an open mind, or perhaps seeking education about things before making blanket statements about them and showing just how oblivious you are to reality.

I really, really hope I was trolled, because knowing I wasted a bit of my time makes me feel MUCH better than knowing that someone as bitter and backwards as you is allowed to roam the internet.

Is it 8-bit? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922427)

DM: Why are you casting Magic Missile? There's nothing to attack here.
Golstaff: I...I'm attacking the darkness!

[...]
Golstaff: Hello.
Elf: Hello.
Golstaff: I am Golstaff, Sorcerer of Light.
Elf: Then how come you had to cast Magic Missile?

Would love to play D&D again... (1)

rAiNsT0rm (877553) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922555)

Who'd have thought that with all the technology and MMO-type games there still isn't a way to play D&D online with a group? As someone who enjoyed D&D back in the day and now a mature gamer with a life and family, I would still love to play but don't have time for bi/tri-weekly meetings in someones basement for hours on end. A night or two a week, online, for a few hours and I'd be a happy nerd.

(or if anyone knows of a solid group with a more relaxed campaign in the Pittsburgh, PA area, I'm down)

Diplomacy (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922857)

I think Wave might be ideal for playing Diplomacy. In Dip, you want to be having numerous conversations, some public, some private, in various combinations of players.

Even without a board widget or an automated adjudicator, it would be a great way for the designers to test out various approaches to Wave privacy (fork this wave privately; attach a confidential comment to this part of a wave; etc.)

Re:Diplomacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29924271)

I like the way that you think

Sooo... (1)

avg_joe_01 (756831) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922867)

"Wave does have support for bots and interactive widgets, so it won't be long before RPG-specific examples of both start cropping up."

We're headed back to MUD's?

Who's with me? (1)

pinkushun (1467193) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923269)

We don't care if it's reworking old technologies, we have to evolve with the technology! And Google seems to love taking up that role, great job and welcome to the future!

"Hey, Graham! I'm not in the room, right?" (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 4 years ago | (#29925133)

The waves are persistent, accessible to anyone who's added to them, and include the ability to track changes, so they ultimately work quite well as a medium for the non-tactical parts of an RPG. A newcomer can jump right in and get up-to-speed on past interactions, and a GM or industrious player can constantly maintain the official record of play by going back and fixing errors, formatting text, adding and deleting material, and reorganizing posts.

Great, so with everything logged, they can finally settle whether or not Galstaff had cast Mordenkainen's Magical Watchdog.

Bot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29926131)

I've created a bot for wave to roll dices (obirpg@appspot.com). I intend to create a rpg helper, but at this very time I dont have enough time to work on that ....

In my opinion wave would be a really good platform for online RPG, especially with proper gadgets / bots (of course, if it stop crashing all the time). It would allow players and DMs to keep track easily of what happened and maps / cards would be shared easily among them ....

Wierd but not new or really suitable... (1)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 4 years ago | (#29928083)

As a pen and paper RPG'er for going on 35+ years now, this is only slightly better than numerous apps that have come and gone. To play a real RPG you need to be face to face with your fellow players so you can read the subtle things. As for a channel for player conversations that the GM should not be a part off ? I can't think of any situation involving game that the GM should NOT be involved in. I think they are headed in the right direction but IMHO this would be almost as bad as calling WoW an RPG.

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