Google began the public testing of Google wave, with 100,000 people invited into the testing phase, each of which can invite up to five people to join in on the testing.

Google’s new communication and collaboration tool, which they say is their attempt at “what email would look like if it were designed today,” integrates aspects of e-mail, social networking, instant messaging, and real-time editing.

Google

Google Wave

Google describes it “how e-mail would look if it were invented today”.

Google, which unveiled Wave in May, says it “isn’t quite ready for primetime.” The collaboration tool lets users create “waves” where they can invite others to share photos, text, gadgets, and links.

Co-creator Lars Rasmussen explains it like this on the Google Blog:

Here’s how it works: In Google Wave you create a wave and add people to it. Everyone on your wave can use richly formatted text, photos, gadgets, and even feeds from other sources on the web. They can insert a reply or edit the wave directly. It’s concurrent rich-text editing, where you see on your screen nearly instantly what your fellow collaborators are typing in your wave. That means Google Wave is just as well suited for quick messages as for persistent content — it allows for both collaboration and communication. You can also use “playback” to rewind the wave and see how it evolved.

Check out the video below to see what it is all about: