Goggle Wave could be really cool

wavesby Duncan Rawlinson

One step towards writing papers in Google Wave:
[Via bioCS]

Google Wave’s underlying technology will not only enable collaboration with other people, it also make it possible for bots to interact with what you’ve written. I think this is going to change the way we work. E.g., all applications which require a significant amount of typing will benefit from the statistical auto-correction provided by the Wave app Spelly. In effect, Spelly goes over the text as you’re typing it and correcting the obvious mistakes, just as you would do a bit later.

In a similar vein, the proof-of-concept bot Igor is watching out for inserted references and automagically converts them to a citation and a reference list. When writing papers, I usually insert reminders: “REF Imming review”, “REF PMID 16007907“. If I adjust this convention a bit and provide a bit more detail, Igor can figure out by itself which paper is meant and fetch the citation. Google Wave and Igor save me the tiresome going back-and-forth between a reference manager and the editor to insert all the citation, and they remove distractions from the process of writing and editing the paper.

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I’ve been having a hard time getting my head around Google Wave. Perhaps if I actually watched the 80 minute video I’d have a better idea.

Anyway, this is pretty neat since dealing with citations in a scientific paper is such a pain. Here, the friendly bot goes out and does it for you. It is still pretty simple so far but a great start. collaborative documents are, I think, going to be a big part of how people create really rich, synthetic works that will be incredibly useful.

Now if schools will just move towards collaborative work, they might be able to enter the new era of learning.

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