AIM presence

AOL Instant Messenger is looking to gain some real estate on your website through AIM Presence. A very short registration gives you a line of code to paste into your site. This code will display one of a six small icons, indicating whether you are online, offline, idle, away, or on mobile AIM. Like so:

(this is likely to be the ‘offline’ icon today)

With this release, AOL has reached agreements with SixApart, Facebook and LinkedIn to allow their users to add online presence to their profiles. In other words, people might get accustomed to seeing a graphical representation of a website author’s online status – IMming libraries, I’m looking in your direction! I’ve already seen this on a few library sites, accomplished by a third-party solution. Code straight from AIM is likely to be more reliable, and it probably won’t be long before MSN and Yahoo join in with an effort.

I think that AIM did this right. It is simple to get the code, and the result isn’t garish or somehow advert laden. Instead, it is pretty plain and simple. Does anyone feel like reading the TOS?

[via bigblueball]

3 thoughts on “AIM presence”

  1. it’s a cool thing that they’re doign BUT if you want to provide this functionality on your web site, you can do it without registering. Until I see that their code is more reliable than what I use [which has worked all the times I’ve bothered to notice] I’m happy to stay unregistered. This is a pretty steep requirement for a ToS, imho

    “Further, the Site shall not (a) contain any pornographic, hate-related, or violent content, (b) promote the sale of tobacco or alcohol to persons under twenty-one (21) years or age; (c) or contain any material, product or services that violate or encourage conduct that would violate any criminal laws, any other laws, or any third party rights.”

    Not like I want to sell porn via my site, but what exactly does “any third party rights” mean exactly? until I know, I’m not signing.

  2. Ok, no doubt that the last part of that clause could be considered creepy, but not “violating third party rights” seems like some standard legalese. If we give it a gracious reading, “don’t violate people’s rights” seems kinda fair to me. Not that I want to sit here trying to defend AOL, trust me.

    Re: your icon. Their tool has a bit more functionalily than your “i”. Right now your “i” is green, but your IM is set to away. I like that their code reflects more than on/off. What third party solution are you using? It would be good for people to know, because the one’s I’ve played with aren’t so good.

    At any rate, thanks for reading the TOS!

  3. I just started using AIM presence recently after receiving my unlimited license. Prior to now I was using a robust algorithm that took well over 100 seconds to execute. With using AIM presence I have been able to build an XML parser in php that can then incorporate with my mySql database to provide online status within 4 seconds of about 1000 users.

    Before AIM presence I only ran this script once every ten minutes, now I’m running it every minute. This creates great potential for guests who want to track their friends’ online status. I can also do things I couldn’t before, like logging away, mobile, and idle statuses.

    If anyone has any questions feel free to contact me. I love feed-back too!

    AIM: TheWLBL.
    AIM Presence in action: http://www.thewlbl.com
    (This website is still under development)

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