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Administrator 2010-08-07

Now that Google has announced that it will be discontinuing wave, we will be removing the integration feature sometime this year.

Glenn Engstrand
Name:Glenn Engstrand

Integrating with Google Wave

On Oct 23, I deployed a new release of Cogenuity that supports Google Wave in solution team collaboration. The team captain and solution creator can enter the wave ID for their team in the maintenance area. Members of such a team will find that wave embedded within the display page for their solution. Here are my findings. 

Most of the time, Google Wave works great. The main gotcha is in the non-uniform behavior that Google Wave exhibits, especially around user authentication. It has been well known for quite some time that Google Wave will not support the Internet Explorer web browser without a special plugin. However, I am finding problems with other popular web browsers on certain operating systems.

The only web browser that had an absolutely clean user experience across the board was Google's own Chrome. The FireFox browser on Windows 2000,  Windows XP, and Vista would authenticate only if you signed in using Google Friend Connect or previously signed in to the site. You will not be able to access the wave using the GUI provided by the embedded wave itself.

This is a problem for folks who registered here without using Google Friend Connect as when they attempt to use Google Friend Connect, they will actually be creating a new account. If you fall into this category, then go ahead and sign in with Google Friend Connect then drop me a line and I will go under the covers and combine the two accounts for you.

The Safari web browser user experience on Windows XP was not so good. It will neither authenticate with Google Wave nor Google Friend Connect. With the former, the browser falsely claims that cookies are turned off. With the latter, you never get to sign in. Instead, the message "We were unable to handle your request. Please try again or return a bit later." gets displayed. This is not an issue with Safari 4.0.3 on OS X.

Here is a work-around to this authentication issue for both FireFox and Safari users who originally did not use Google Friend Connect when they registered on Cogenuity. Just sign in to Google Wave first, then visit your solution page. You won't need to use Google Friend Connect in that scenario. Remember that your credentials for Cogenuity are most likely to be different than your credentials for Google.

There is one additional complication for folks who use the most recent release (version 3.5.3) of FireFox on Windows 2000. You are going to have to explicitly allow Google to save cookies.

  1. To do this, simply click the Tools menu followed by the Options sub menu.
  2. Click on the Privacy icon followed by the Exceptions button.
  3. Type as the address of the web site then click the Allow button.

This is not an issue with older releases (version 3.0) of FireFox. Also, this is not an issue with FireFox on OS X. There is a possibility that this is actually a plugin issue.

If this is too much bother for you, then don't worry. The original solution team discussion feature is still in place and you can continue to use that instead.

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