First impressions on using Google Wave

Here’s what I’ve learned so far: the screencast is the least informative form of instructional material on the entire planet.

I’ll presumably have more extensive commentary after I’ve found wherever they’ve hidden the text instructions, or else after I’ve figured out how to use it by just banging around at it — but the explanatory videos they’ve put front and center are just painfully, embarrassingly bad.

To be clear: I don’t mean the production values, which they’ve deliberately kept rough and low-tech. This is fine. My problem is with absence of any actual information in them; none of the screencasts I’ve watched so far have conveyed any more than simply reading the labels on the buttons would have. Most of them, in fact, have consisted of them simply reading the button labels at you. “The ‘Search’ bar in the ‘Contacts’ area will allow you to search within your contacts!”

Wave has potential, but it clearly takes some getting used to. They’re going to have to do a lot better job of explaining it than this if they expect it to catch on.

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