It's finally happening. The promised arrival of server side software is slowly emerging. Downloading software is surely going to become a thing of the past:
Email: Gmail and Zimbra
Spreadsheets: Google Spreadsheets...this is the coolest thing, I've switched as I can share my spreadsheets and work in groups
Wiki: My office has set-up a knowledge management and info sharing system using Mediawiki. It's the best tool we've ever used. No more (or atlest no more important ones) documents lying on people's computers all over the office.This 1st thing we're puttin on are our business process manuals.
Storage: Say hello to online storage guys like XDrive, GoDaddy, where you can store all your files instead of on your PC
Photos: Picasa, Ofoto and the others aren't just photo sharing sites, they are photo storage sites :)
Word Documents: Writely is great, works with each using your Google account. And ofcourse it's got the easy share feature.
Games: Ok, hardcore action games have a huge way to go, but all the other games are already online. Infact there are now games you can only play online.
Music: You can get almost all the music you want via Shoutcast. If you haven't checked this one out do it now.
Chat: This has some way to go, but I think in a year or two most messengers will be online. For customer support we are already using a put online web messenger.
Whats left: besides the browser, odds and ends, like visio, skype, photo editing software, some windows utilities...
Google in the thick of it all
These guys really have their eye firmly on server side. They have smartly intergrated docs and spreadsheets into gmail. And they have really worked hard on making sure the server side stuff works lightining fast.
Another important but low key piece of software by Google is the Firefox browser sync which keeps your FF updated with cookies, passwords, history etc, all the time by storing these at Google, allowing you to use FF anywhere and get the same feel as home. Now I bet Google is planning on extending their deal with FF to include this extension as default with FF...