A Lite Story

A few people have been asking me about AIM Lite as it has been over a year since we last did a release.  I wanted to take this opportunity to clear up some stuff with AIM Lite.  The idea of a light-weight AIM client pre-dates my 9+ years at AOL, by a few months, but it really came to surface in the winter of 2006 during the AIM Triton project.

When we created AIM Lite it was done as an exercise to improve the architecture that was used to connect Open AIM to the user interface elements.  Things like displaying IMs, rendering 1000 buddies in a Buddy List, and composing IMs were improved in AIM Lite.  Now much of that knowledge resides in the AIM client, and has been available to everyone since last year’s AIM 6.5 release.

AIM Lite also gave birth to a feature everyone benefited from in June of 2008.  AIM Lite featured a type of AIM Plugin called AIM Widgets (AWI).  These AIM Widgets led us to developing AIM Modules, which are a super set of AWIs in functionality and features.

I can’t say we will never touch the AIM Lite code base again, and for those who still use AIM Lite, we have no plans to decommission it either.  Hopefully this clears up any misconceptions behind AIM Lite, and if you are looking for a simple AIM experience, check out the AIM Express client.  The best part is that there is no download for the client, as long as Flash 9 is installed.

2 thoughts on “A Lite Story

  1. Dude, what’s up!

    Hey, is AOL hiring? I need a job…I was in real estate. Didn’t work out. Just like my tech job at a start up didn’t work out in 01.

    Anyway, that’s the last time I’ll get a job in the hottest field. That’s why I thought a job at AOL would be perfect. There’s nothing hot going on there. Am I right or am I right? I’m right, right?

    Hey, just kidding. I love AIM and use it a lot. I use it to send TEXT MESSAGES. No, seriously…just TEXT MESSAGES. No video, no whimsicals, and none of those silly, cherubic avatars for 12 yr olds. And I don’t suffer pain wondering what plugins I need to download. You are wasting time with that crap. I typically send (are you ready?)…TEXT! You mastered that a long time ago!

    That’s why AIM Lite rocks. Thanks for developing it and keep on blogging!

  2. Hi Greg,

    I will have to catch up on OpenAIM 2.0….

    I have one question for you: is there any chance of AOL opening up the source code for its XUL-based
    version of AIM which was part of the Netscape 7.x to 8.x releases?

    After AOL stopped releasing new versions with 9.0.x, many users of Firefox and the succesor of Mozilla (SeaMonkey – http://www.mozilla.org/projects/seamonkey/) continue missing the sidebar tab AIM functionality that was provided with the XUL AIM lightweight client.

    Given that we’re talking here about a small piece of code (not a full blown client), and one that plugged into Mozilla SeaMonkey and Firefox, why not releasing it under an open source license?

    Thoughts? Comments?


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