Spaaze is an infinite virtual cork board, and you can use it to do almost everything.
Spaaze (pronounced "space") offers it's users so called boards. Each board is an infinite space which resembles a virtual cork board - hence the default cork background, but other backgrounds are available. On these boards, items can be put. Currently Spaaze offers 7 different items: Labels, Notes, Bookmarks, Images, Files, Videos and HTML. These items can be edited in place, moved via drag and drop and positioned freely on the board. Therefore it's possible to arrange a bunch of items any way you like, which makes it possible to use it for many different use cases.
To add some structure to the board it's possible to "remember" certain points (around which items have been placed) by creating hotspots (e.g. one per topic of a bookmark collection). Furthermore Spaaze is collaborative. This means that board owners can invite others to join them and edit their board as well. Finished board can be easily published, which creates public link of a read only view of the board to share it with others.
Spaaze runs on every modern browser (IE7+, FF4+, Safari4+, Chrome) and also on the iPad (with full multi-touch support).
I hope this gives you an idea of what Spaaze is and what you can do with it. If you think that there's something missing or could be explained better for this short "About Spaaze" summary, please let me know: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Idea
There are tons of different online services available nowadays. And we at Irian actually use a lot of them. So once when having lunch with colleagues we talked about the idea of having a place to consolidate all the different types of things we do on the web. Spaaze was born.
We thought about different ways of how to achieve this, but one word kept coming up: wall. We wanted to have some kind of space where we could put our stuff on. Like a personal wall where one can put documents for one project in one place and bookmarks to some articles on some other place of a wall. The idea of having this kind of physical relation to where stuff goes stuck, and the simplest and most logical thing to do with this idea was to implement a virtual cork board. Without the limitations of real world cork boards of course.
After some quick prototyping and a lot of dogfooding (using your own products) Spaaze has proven to be an very capable solution for a lot of different tasks. Due to it's nature it can be used for almost anything. I like to compare this kind of specialization and generalization with mobile phones. Smartphones cover a lot of use cases nowadays. It's a photo and video camera, it's an MP3 player, it's a game console and so on. And it performs just fine in this tasks on a basic level. But people who are really into photography still will use a dedicated camera. It's the same with Spaaze. You can use it's notes and labels for simple project management and todo lists and it's bookmarks for simple "Read-Later" tracking. People who are really into this will still use specialized software for this tasks. But for many people Spaaze will do just fine for that. So instead of having 20 accounts for 20 different services, Spaaze can help to have only 5 accounts for the specialized services you really need, and cover all the rest with just one account in one application.
I personally use Spaaze mainly for two things: Bookmark collection and archiving and note taking. Whenever taking quick notes I used to just open Notepad, write down some text (no fancy formatting) and save it on the desktop. But since I have multiple computers I never had the right notes at the right place when I needed them. Since Spaaze is an online application I can use it to take my notes there and have the available everywhere. Also I like to keep bookmarks to interesting articles, funny videos and resources I might need again later (where was this online shop which offered spare parts for my Roomba in Austria?). So I have one private board, with temporary links and notes in the center, and hotspots with links and videos for certain topics. A second board with nearly the same structure for work related stuff and so on. But the possibilities are countless: From simple homepage creation, to collaborative Kanban style project management.
About the Technology
Spaaze is built on top of some of the greatest web development resources I've ever worked with. Here's a list of what made Spaaze possible: