EtherPad: Realtime Collaborative Text Editing


EtherPad is the only web-based word processor that allows people to work together in really real-time.

When multiple people edit the same document simultaneously, any changes are instantly reflected on everyone’s screen. The result is a new and productive way to collaborate on text documents, useful for meeting notes, drafting sessions, education, team programming, and more.

First saw this at Studyguru’s site. Reminded me of what is promised in Google Wave. May be worth checking it out – or suggesting some group tries it and reports back?

It gets round ‘the elephant in the room’ with Wikis – which can be summed up as: ‘first to save wins’.  This is an issue on Kaleidos as on many Wikis. I had to demonstrate it to the guy who last came in from RM as he didn’t believe me – but if two people work at the same time, whoever saves second loses all their changes. Now that’s hardly in the spirit of collaboration, is it? So groups need a way to signal when it is being edited  or better still, the software should warn that it is being edited.


1 Comment

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One response to “EtherPad: Realtime Collaborative Text Editing

  1. s3atlarge

    I suppose the problem with great ideas (particularly when they are free) is that someone comes along and snaps them up. And quite right too, really. Etherpad is going to a new life in Googlewave – although an open source version should be available at some future point.

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