A few people have been asking me about AIM Lite as it has been over a year since we last did a release.Â I wanted to take this opportunity to clear up some stuff with AIM Lite.Â 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.Â Things like displaying IMs, rendering 1000 buddies in a Buddy List, and composing IMs were improved in AIM Lite.Â 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.Â AIM Lite featured a type of AIM Plugin called AIM Widgets (AWI).Â 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.Â 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.Â The best part is that there is no download for the client, as long as Flash 9 is installed.
I have been getting tons of feedback on the new AIM Express we launched last month.Â The new application is really a great step forward for AIM.Â Built on top of Adobe Flash and our ActionScript3 library, AIM Express gives you a rich messaging experience without having to download any software.Â Since it is web base, you can use it on any supported browser (IE 6.0+, Firefox 2.0+, Safari 3.0+) with Flash 9.0.Â The best part is when we want to upgrade the application, we can do it without popping annoying upgrade dialogs, etc.
Going on vacation with the family and having no internet accessibility is always a challenge.Â Awaiting my return was about 1000+ email I had to catch up on, then there were all my feeds to read, I also could not prepare adequately for my fantasy football draft this week which could hamper my fun over the next 18 weekends.
Apparently we did a whole bunch of releases while I was gone, so for now I will just post a summary, and get into more details in follow up posts.
Test out the new character counter when you IM a mobile buddy or number in your Buddy List
Express yourself with spankin’ new Emoticons that display in your IM window
Rollover your Buddy to see their screen name, buddy icon, and status message with a quick glance
Use the new sound icon to toggle your alerts on/off
The client was built using Flash, so make sure you have the latest version of Flash 9.Â The client also takes advantage of the OpenAIM ActionScript3 library, otherwise known as wimas3.Â As always we appreciate the feedback, so make sure you share it with us.
Yesterday we released a new version of AIM Express Beta 3 that addresses a bunch of bugs as well as a few feature requests.
Improved connection & performance
Shortcut key to start a new IM with someone on or not on your Buddy List, use CTRL + /
Report Abuse on users who are IM’ing with threatening messages
Clear History in your IM from the right click menu on with IM window
We’ve added a dropdown menu on each IM window with some actions you can take for each buddy
Note: We are asking that everyone update to the latest version of Adobe Flash 9 for AIM Express, as Flash just recently fixed a serious security flaw.Â As always we love to get feedback on this client, as the features above are a direct result of all the great feedback we are getting.
Last week was a busy week in the AIM world in Dulles, so I am still catching up on all the news we generated. We pushed a new update of AIM Express beta 2, which is an AIM application for people who do not want to download the AIM client or have issues connecting due to network configuration.
Although this application will work with most versions of AdobeÂ® FlashÂ® 9, we highly recommend you upgrade to the most recent version of Flash, as older versions have a serious security flaw. The upgrade is available here.