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Gaim Maintainer Rob Flynn Interviewed

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the mover-shaker-and-stirrer dept.

Communications 228

gaimster writes "LinuxQuestions.org just interviewed gaim maintainer Rob Flynn. gaim version 1.0.0 was recently released and it has been the most active project on SourceForge for a while. In the interview, Rob explains what it's like to maintain such a popular project, how he got involved with gaim and what he thinks of some of the IM protocols that gaim supports. He also explains the Ebay auctions that gaim had a while back."

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Poll Troll Toll (0, Offtopic)

PollTroll (764214) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350679)

What's better...

AIM [calcgames.org]
GAIM [calcgames.org]
MSN Messenger [calcgames.org]
SWAM [calcgames.org]

erm? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350682)

Closure on this project will be a blessing, with M$ continually changing their protocol to fudge up any advancements in gaim; it's just not going to work.

Gaim rules (4, Informative)

alatesystems (51331) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350687)

Gaim is really awesome. We use it internally at work for Jabber(internal instant messenging). It's amazing just how many protocols it supports natively. It is a great client even though it's using GTK in windows. I already donated to the gaim project, and so should anyone else who uses it on a regular basis.

I love this project and hope it continues well into the future.

Chris

Re:Gaim rules (0)

pugdk (697845) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350871)

yeah gaim REALLY rules *sarcasm*

No offence, but MSN has never EVER worked for me with gaim. With each new version I get another new exciting error code (lates one, in 1.0.0 is: "Unable to write to MSN server via HTTP (9)".

I know the gaim team knows that there are trouble with the MSN protocol for a lot of people, so how can you release a version 1.0.0 knowing it doesn't work?

I like the idea of a multi IM app, but unfortunately none of them has everything I need or work with all protocols. I hope gaim will work with MSN someday soon though :(

-pug

Re:Gaim rules (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350935)

Boohoo, the software you never paid for and did jack shit to support doesn't work with some idiotic protocol that no one uses anyway. Whine whine whine. Get a fucking life. Yeah, gaim sucks, which is why so many people use it. By the way, what have *you* written? The MSN spec is quote-unquote open, so why don't you write your own fucking im client?

Oh yeah, I remember. You're a lazy asshole who bitches rather than doing real work.

Re:Gaim rules (2, Interesting)

lunenburg (37393) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350941)

I use GAIM's MSN messenger stuff every day to talk to the Windows users on my project, and even use it through a Squid proxy. Works fine for me.

[shrug]

Re:Gaim rules (2, Interesting)

jilles (20976) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350962)

It didn't last a full 24 hours on my machine (a windows box). I installed it on a whim last night. At first I was rather pleased with it but then the error messages started appearing (both icq and msn). Also the GTK library for windows is very buggy. I had some problems with tooltips that just wouldn't disappear and the attempt at antialiasing made the GTK widgets stand out as notably blurry compared to the rest of the desktop.

So I am back using miranda-im which does a much better job in being both less intrusive and more feature rich. I've been using it for more than a year and it seems very stable. I was wrong in assuming gaim would offer similar stability.

Re:Gaim rules (2, Informative)

cjpez (148000) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351388)

Windows Gaim != UN*X Gaim

I've been using Gaim for, well, a long time now, and the only problems I've ever had with it were protocol changes from yahoo which meant I had to wait for the next version of Gaim to come out before I could connect again. The Unix versions of Gaim *do* offer the kind of stability you're after, but the Windows port is apparently something else.

I beg to differ (0, Troll)

rooler (800884) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350921)

I honestly can't understand /.'s obsession with Gaim.

It's a great open source project, that's for sure, but it still lacks so many important features.

No global hotkeys? You gotta be kidding me. The logging system is truly awful too, with all those countless directories (the authors claim that this is the best solution to avoid errors in the logging system, but I've seen many better solutions from other programs).

Another undeniable thing is Gaim isn't stable enough. The latest version already locked up on me (on Windows XP) a good handful of times, and some friends claim to have problems with its stability too. Yes, even under Linux -- amazingly, nowadays it's *very* rare to have any application lock up on me under XP. Including other IM's.

That said, I'd still understand all the fuzz if another such project didn't exist. But hey, wait a second, there's Miranda Instant Messenger [miranda-im.org] ! A much more stable program, which is also free, and features a huge plugin database that adds a lot of functionalities Gaim can only dream about right now. Including global hotkeys and an amazing logging system...

OK, I know Miranda is Windows-only.. But that doesn't impede us to compare it to Gaim, considering both programs are freeware. So, well, I just think it's sad that Gnome and KDE users have to lean on Gaim for an IM'ing solution right now. If I were still running X, I'd be seriously disappointed with this reality.

Re:I beg to differ (2, Informative)

smacktits (737334) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351021)

I second that. I was a user of Trillian Professional and was most impressed, but after finding out about Miranda I never bought another copy of Trillian.

Re:I beg to differ (1)

teprrr (733211) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351049)

So, well, I just think it's sad that Gnome and KDE users have to lean on Gaim for an IM'ing solution right now.
Well, there's Kopete for KDE users and at least it's enough for me. I can communicate via MSN with a couple of friends who don't irc and Kopete works just fine for this.

Re:Gaim rules (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351212)


A Linux think widget-something of a messenger device..open source North Carolina needing to communicate with California.

See. That's when he really learned C. Seashore girl.
Gaim. Thanks.

I love GAIM but ... (5, Interesting)

SpooForBrains (771537) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350693)

GAIM is great, because it keeps pushing the boundaries of IM functionality on Linux, BUT that said, I keep switching back to Kopete [kde.org] , mainly because it integrates with KDE. For an IM client, intergration with the desktop is paramount IMHO.

Re:I love GAIM but ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350749)

"intergration with the desktop is paramount IMHO."

Stay humble man. It's your calling.

Why integrate everything into the DE? (1, Interesting)

tetromino (807969) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350803)

For an IM client, intergration with the desktop is paramount IMHO.

I don't see why. An IM client has fairly unsual UI requirements, so it seems unfair for it to follow the look'n'feel standards of the DE too closely. The only argument for integration with the DE is the contact list (being able to see if the guy who sent you an email is online), which isn't compelling enough IMHO.

I keep switching back to Kopete
I think Kopete is nice, but it suffers because its UI is too KDE-ish. Having to follow two levels in the context menus to do common actions just so that the structure of the context menu follows the KDE standards? Blargh.

Re:I love GAIM but ... (0, Flamebait)

fire-eyes (522894) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351226)

Typical KDE user; Cares about looks over functionality.

Re:I love GAIM but ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351262)

I tend to find the opposite is true: KDE is very functional but about the ugliest thing on the planet. Hence KDE users value the immense number of features that KDE boasts but have absolutely no taste when it comes to looks.

gaim is great (4, Interesting)

deviantonline (542095) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350703)

I have been using gaim for sometime over msn/icq and I think its fantastic! It is very stable and has been a staple of my linux desktop for some time. I have also converted many of my windows based friends to the program as well. One thing that is so nice about open source software is that in many cases it is available on multiple platforms.

We are all like windows. (0, Troll)

Thinkit4 (745166) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350801)

So brittle. The day will come when we will exist in defensive pods that are impervious to nearly all weaponry. Just host consciousness in a sturdy pod.

At that point we'll be spread out in space alone or in small groups. Protocols wouldn't be a problem, and even if they were we'd have enough computing power to easily translate. So no need for all these IM formats.

Re:We are all like windows. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350834)

So brittle. The day will come when we will exist in defensive pods that are impervious to nearly all weaponry. Just host consciousness in a sturdy pod.

At that point we'll be spread out in space alone or in small groups. Protocols wouldn't be a problem, and even if they were we'd have enough computing power to easily translate. So no need for all these IM formats.


Wait, what?

You know it's popular when... (5, Funny)

Justin205 (662116) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350704)

You get beer donated. ;-)

Seriously, money is overrated. Send food, send beer, and then you'll really motivate many developers. :-P

Re:You know it's popular when... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350987)

If you are still motivated to code after drinking beer then you aren't drinking nearly enough.

Re:You know it's popular when... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351292)

Money can buy many beers.

I use it everywhere... (4, Insightful)

Lispy (136512) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350706)

It's the Firefox of InstantMessenging. My friends adopt it quite easy. It's actually a shame it isn't part of the OpenCD. But I guess that's because it uses GTK (wich is great for a Gnome addict such as me.) ;-)

Re:I use it everywhere... (4, Interesting)

bizpile (758055) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350805)

It's actually a shame it isn't part of the OpenCD

But it is on GNUWin [gnuwin.epfl.ch] , which is, in my opinion, slightly better that OpenCD (which itself is very good). It's how I got started converting my Windows box to only open source programs (except Windows, of course).

**** I HATE JEWS **** I HATE JEWS **** (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350722)

DFSA Ff edas ffa sd sde fafaf fa sdfasfd vxczv q32 welj2lkz chonk this root zip pls now is the desktop

Reason: Please use fewer 'junk' characters.
Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted!

Re:**** I HATE JEWS **** I HATE JEWS **** (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350750)

Shana tovah to you too!

If he's 24 how did he install slackware at age 12? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350724)

He's 24 and he installed slackware at age 12 which would mean he used it in 1992 but it didn't come out until 1993.

Re:If he's 24 how did he install slackware at age (2, Insightful)

torstenvl (769732) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350807)

He's 24 in late September of '04 which means he was 12 in late September of '92. Which means he could have remained 12 until September of '93. That's two thirds of the year in question. So what was your beef with his claim again?

The reason (5, Funny)

vijaya_chandra (618284) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350736)

From the interview
I had met a girl at the beach that used AIM, and I had no way to talk to her, so, I joined the project to help development.

Now I know why I don't have any good projects to my name.
Time to spend more time on the beach I suppose.

Re:The reason (5, Funny)

tdvaughan (582870) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350885)

He could have just....talked to her, but noooo - he had to go and write a program to do it. God help him when he wants to have kids ;).

Re:The reason (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350963)

> He could have just....talked to her, but noooo - he had to go and write a program to do it. God help him when he wants to have kids

Um... GSEX? :ducks:

Re:The reason (4, Funny)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351222)

Just another tunneling setup problem, right?

Right?

Re:The reason (5, Funny)

randominator (753545) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350924)

Girlfriend? Fast sports car(s)? Only 24? Social life on the beach? Maintainer on Gaim? What the bloody hell is going on?!? Sure makes me feel like a real achiever, yeah... If you want me, I'll be over there in the corner, hiding under a blanket and sobbing.

Re:The reason (1)

adam mcmaster (697132) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351149)

Does anyone else find it odd that he got her AIM ID, but not her phone number?

Re:The reason (1)

PedanticSpellingTrol (746300) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351338)

I tried that once... It turned out that she was an aol usesr and it was also her email address, so a few university directory, reverse phone-lookup, mapquest and terraserver queries later, I had aerial photos of her house. Then I drew her into conversation about the dangers of ever more prolific databases in our society and the corrolary loss of privacy, demonstrated my methods, and got "OMG! Cool!" in response. A few months later we accidentally went through security at a military base on our way to see Fahrenheit 9/11. Ahh, paranoid love.

Re:The reason (5, Funny)

TheBurningDog (747915) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351203)

obviously a mistranslation by the interviewer...

I'm sure he meant #thebeach

Gaim. (1, Interesting)

Eeknay (766740) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350746)

Gaim is a good program, I've been using it for a while now, but last time I formatted my computer, it kept dropping the connection to MSN... despite the fact that my ports are forwarded correctly, and it was working just fine previously. So I've had to revert back to MSN Messenger 6.2, where there's no problem. Otherwise, it's a great little program.

Re:Gaim. (1)

emazing (778569) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350850)

You're not alone. What I can reccomend is that you in your preferences, configure the Auto-Reconnect Plugin to hide disconnect errors and have Gaim automatically reconnect.

Re:Gaim. (2, Informative)

Whyte (65556) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350872)

You probably didn't have the newest version of GAIM installed, or you were using it right after MSN changed their protocol.

Since the various IM's keep changing their protocols, GAIM is constently needed to patch those changes. They have a rather quick release cycle though, which is one of the main reason I continue to use it.

Viva la Gaim!

Re:Gaim. (1)

Eeknay (766740) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350930)

I was using 0.8.2, but I just downloaded 1.0.0, and I get the same disconnect. Actually, it's a new error, in that it can't communicate with the MSN HTTP server (or something to that effect).

GTK Runtime on Win32 (3, Interesting)

flonker (526111) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350792)

Since the dropline win32 GTK runtime distribution is no longer maintained, are they rolling their own? They have a standalone GTK installer download, but where did it come from?

Re:GTK Runtime on Win32 (2, Informative)

rainwater (530678) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351005)

Since the dropline win32 GTK runtime distribution is no longer maintained, are they rolling their own?

Yes, they have developed their own gtk installer.

Re:GTK Runtime on Win32 (1)

xant (99438) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351239)

http://gladewin32.sourceforge.net/ makes excellent GTK installers for windows, btw. Better than GAIM's imho, because it includes more things you need for Python development :-)

hehe .. is news so hard to come by? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350799)

who gives a flying fuck about GAIM?

jesus

gaim is great, and I especially like Adium (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350802)

When I use OS X, I really like Adium [adiumx.org] . It uses libgaim for its messaging, but has its own native-OSX GUI. I think the GTK gaim could learn a few things that are particularly nice about Adium too---I like how it highlights your buddy's names in the buddy list with color codes depending on current messaging status: green if they're currently typing, blue if they've typed something into a window you haven't checked since then, etc.

Re:gaim is great, and I especially like Adium (1)

kjones692 (805101) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350909)

Adium's great, but its support of Direct Connections and file transfers is abysmal; I always have to open up iChat or AIM to transfer files. It's great in almost all other respects; why'd they have to go and screw up that one critical aspect?

Re:gaim is great, and I especially like Adium (1)

Juanvaldes (544895) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351207)

because it's not done? For now you can see the progress by opening up console.

I thought this was funny (-1, Redundant)

EdMcMan (70171) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350808)

I had met a girl at the beach that used AIM, and I had no way to talk to her, so, I joined the project to help development.

Wow. (1)

mind21_98 (18647) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350809)

This guy got a job offer (assuming it's IT) out of high school. He officially rules. :)

Re:Wow. (1)

auntfloyd (18527) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350957)

Well, it was 1998, when the economy was booming, and IT budgest were huge. Pretty common, actually. Not to say he's not a great programmer (c'mon, Gaim rules. Admit it).

Re:Wow. (1)

jrockway (229604) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351269)

And interstingly, the most recent major security vulnerability (you can take over the computer with one IM) was in code contributed by Novell. Scary!!

link http://cr.yp.to/2004-494/gaim.html [cr.yp.to]

One thing lets GAIM down badly (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350810)

Its UI, GTK sucks, the damn thing doesnt even repaint if u are in a middle of a resize. Amaturish widget set.

Re:One thing lets GAIM down badly (2, Interesting)

torstenvl (769732) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350830)

Resizing is handled in the window manager. This is one of the 'problems' of the modularization of X. To repaint in the middle of a resize, the widget set would have to poll constantly for window size. That's a stupid waste of resources.

Re:One thing lets GAIM down badly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350843)

Im not using it on X u ninney, im using it on Windows.

New features? (4, Interesting)

wicka_wicka (679279) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350829)

Maybe, before they start adding new features, they should work more on getting the thing completely stable. If I read a couple of my friend's infos, it crashes. If I reconnect and it doesn't work, it crashes. I think that should be a higher priority than a damn webcam.

Re:New features? (1)

big daddy kane (731748) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350893)

yeah that happens to me too. it's an awesome program but it's still lacking a few things. such as file transfer compatability with the windows AIM client!

Re:New features? (1)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350907)

Make sure you are running the latest version.

I use Gaim under XP and it has been very stable. Try upgrading your GTK, too, assuming you are on windows.

My experience with Gaim has been good, once I got used to it and they released a few upgrades. 1.0 is rock solid.

Re:New features? (1)

lakiolen (785856) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350955)

I'm running Gaim v1.0.0 under XP and I've had it crash multiple times. Also it likes to eat up all the available cpu time when focusing any of its windows (might be because i have transparency set, but it didn't do this in v0.82)

Make Demands! (1)

maggard (5579) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350946)

Maybe, before they start adding new features, they should work more on getting the thing completely stable. If I read a couple of my friend's infos, it crashes. If I reconnect and it doesn't work, it crashes. I think that should be a higher priority than a damn webcam.
Demand your money back!

Oh wait...

Demand the developers do as you say!

Uh, hmmm...

Demand you be able to give developers money to do as you say!

Or, ummm...

Do it yourself?

Re:New features? (1)

dejamatt (704418) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351072)

If I read a couple of my friend's infos, it crashes.

Someone told me to turn on "Ignore font faces" in Preferences > Conversations > Message Text, and that fixed the problem with it crashing when I check certain people's infos. My guess is that it can't handle fonts you don't have installed or something like that.

Re:New features? (1)

wicka_wicka (679279) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351087)

Thanks dejamatt, I'll try that. The funny thing is that it only ever happened with two people, and since I've upgraded to 1.0.0 it only happens with one guy...here's one thing that pisses me off: there's nothing better than Gaim, so I guess I'm rather screwed.

Re:New features? (1)

sp0rk173 (609022) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351112)

...the webcam version is a fork...it's not being developed in the official code repository by the main developers. But I agree, there are definitely some rought edges that need to be fixed (and i'm sure they are). If they really both you? Learn C and fix them. In the world of open source, you are only at the mercy of the developers if you choose not to code.

Re:New features? (1)

wicka_wicka (679279) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351167)

They don't really bother me enough to go learn C and fix them myself, but it does bother me that they manage to ignore all these bugs and start working on other features. You'd think at the very least they'd get file transfer implemented correctly.

Trillian? (1)

__int64 (811345) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350852)

Anybody else here use Trillian? Besides the fact that it doesn't run on Linux and there's a pay version, how would you guys compare it to GAIM?

Re:Trillian? (2, Interesting)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350890)

I like Trillian, a lot, but switched to Gaim as part of a moral stand in support of Open Source, and haven't regretted the switch.

1.0 is great and stable. I use ICQ / AIM, MSN, Yahoo, and Jabber, all simultaneously and it works pretty much flawlessly.

My MSN always shows me as offline and they can't send me messages, but I can send them messages. I strongly suspect this is some screwiness with the MSN protocol.

All in all I really like Gaim, and don't really miss Trillian. At the same time I switched from Office to Open Office, and haven't regretted that switch either.

Eventually I'll lose XP altogether, but I still use Dreamweaver MX 2004, which doesn't have an Open Source WYSIWYG counterpart as far as I've been able to find, so I'm stuck here for the time being (and no, crossover office / wine don't work).

Dreamweaver? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351080)

" I still use Dreamweaver MX 2004, which doesn't have an Open Source WYSIWYG counterpart as far as I've been able to find"

No offense, but if you're using Dreamweaver to build wysiwyg table layouts, you're about four years behind the times. Building table-less layouts with XHTML and CSS is so much simpler (once you learn the new tricks) that it's easier just to code in a good text editor! Dreamweaver has pathetic CSS support and is an awful XHTML editor. Its code never validates and is often too complex to be human-readable.

In other words, unless you really like the hoary old Netscape 4/IE 5 paradigm of web design, you shouldn't let the lack of a WYSIWYG table editor stop you from abandoning XP.

(Yes, I am a professional web designer.)

Another true believer (2, Insightful)

saur2004 (801688) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350873)

Ever since they solved a nasty little persistent crash problem that was happening in Windows, Ive become a real fan of GAIM.

One suggestion I would make though.

On IRCs make the default character coding ISO-8859-1

I was on a server that had a channel name spelled with a "tilde e" which was consistently causing problems for UTF-8

Gaim is Great But.... (1)

leav (797254) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350877)

gaim has reached several milestones, which include:
1)it works.
2)it has a following.
3)it is somewhat stable.

but it still lacks the power of the official clients for each protocol, namely the power of AV (Audio and Video).

until gaim integrates this functionality (whether or not this will come from the Gaim-VV fork) it could not win over the majority of the population of IM clients:
the stupid windows users (not implying that all windows users are stupid, mind you).

I can imagine a future for gaim, the question is whether i will be able to see and hear that future.

We're just poor kids (1)

Judg3 (88435) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350882)

Ok, so we see "I owned two twin-turboed Mitsubishi 3000GTs" and then we see "We're just poor kids".

So which is it? And if that's whats classified as poor in your neck of the woods, then damn it I'm moving! :P

Re:We're just poor kids (1)

DigitalRaptor (815681) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350925)

It's not like he said Ferrari's or some other expensive exotic car.

My wifes new Ford F-150 cost as much as a 3000GT did.

He probably had a couple $400 car payments. Easy to cover for anyone with a good work ethic and self control.

No big deal. Get over it.

What's with the Trillian ref? (1)

maggard (5579) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350910)

LQ) Having gone through the licensing ordeal with Trillian, do you have any comments on some of the recent GPL-related incidents?
RF) We're just trying ot handle them as we find out about them. We try to be upfront with the offenders and hope that they "do the right thing" so that we don't have to take more extreme measures. This usually works pretty well.
Umm, "...licensing ordeal with Trillian", "We try to be upfront with the offenders...", anyone care to explain/elaborate?

Should I be feeling uncomfortable about using Trillian?

Re:What's with the Trillian ref? (4, Informative)

Tezkah (771144) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350959)

No, it was suspected that the Cerulean Studios were using GPL code in Trillian, but it has been determined to be false. [neohapsis.com]

auto parts scam (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350939)

Scam Warning: Do not try to buy auto parts from: The Parts Bin.com, Speedy Auto Parts.com, overnightautoparts.com or autopartswebsolutions.com or any of their affiliates.

Against my mechanic's advice I ordered a master cylinder that normally sells for $216 from thepartsbin.com for $144. The part I got looks like it was made in HS shop class for about $2-$4 dollars, no exaggeration. This is not a mistake, the worthless junk they shipped me is simply not found anywhere near any legitimate auto parts operation and would not fit any car. They did not risk any money by shipping junk. Now comes the scam: When I return it not only do I pay shipping but they want to charge $29 for restocking, about 10 times what the part could possibly have cost them. They don't make money selling parts; they make money "restocking". Much easier than having all those confusing boxes with all those numbers. They say it takes up to 4 weeks to receive credit, I'm not holding my breath, I've talked to a couple of people and I pretty sure I've been straight-up scammed.

I think some Mail-Boxes Etc type business could offer a service where internet bought items could be examined before money changes hands.

Order parts from a store where you can look at them otherwise up will be ripped-off.

Separate upgrades for protocol plugins? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350943)

GAIM is one of my favorite open source projects, and a wonderful app in itself. However, one thing annoys me: the fact that I have to upgrade the whole thing for every minor protocol change.

As in, when Yahoo! or MSN makes a switch to its protocols, I can't just download a file and fix it - I have to get a whole new package, or recompile, and so forth. This is particularly frustrating as newer GAIM releases (naturally) use newer GTK libraries and then all the libraries that depends on. Turns it into a Microsoft-esque upgrade cycle!

It'd be nice if I could just install GAIM 1.0, and then keep it like that for a few years, upgrading the protocol plugins whenever necessary. It'd save a lot of time, and mean I don't need to keep upgrading Glib, GTK, and a million other things (that tend to get heavier with each release) just to keep on chatting.

Perhaps I'm missing something - any thoughts on this? Either way, good work GAIM crew!

Re:Separate upgrades for protocol plugins? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350961)

I don't know why this was scored zero, this is exactly what Gaim developers need to address, once fixed it will rule the messaging world. Until then it's a close second.

Re:Separate upgrades for protocol plugins? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351017)

scored zero b/c it's an A/C comment. Try logging in to post. I'd mod you up, but I think wasting mod points on A/Cs is a waste of time.

gaim, ehhhh (5, Interesting)

miseryinmotion (615385) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350949)

This will probably be modded as a troll considering it isn't the common Slashdot opinion, but oh well.

I've used gaim off and on over the past year, (on both Linux and windows) and found that the windows port really doesn't compare at all to the Linux version, and to put it simply, on windows, it's really just a waste of resources.

For all the windows users that can't stand the bloated msn messenger or latest official aim client, I suggest at least checking out Miranda. [miranda-im.org] I was introduced to it a few weeks ago by a long time gaim user (who was fed up with all the inconsistencies and problems with gaim under windows) and have been using Miranda almost exclusively since then. Albeit, it has some current issues with file transfers, but I'm sure that's only a momentary problem.

Re:gaim, ehhhh (1)

HungSquirrel (790165) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351091)

Don't worry, Gaim has problems with file transfers too. Am I the only one here who has NEVER had a successful AIM file transfer when using Gaim? Don't get me wrong, I love Gaim and use it in both Linux and Windows, but I don't like having to switch to AOL's official client every time I see a Direct Connect dialog pop up.

Re:gaim, ehhhh (1)

finker (735219) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351353)

I guess we're all in the same boat. I can't get Direct Connect to work worth beans with Gaim on Windows. I'm not behind a router or anything like that, and I sure know I have my firewall setup correctly, it just always fails to connect. As soon as I wait 30 minutes for AIM to start, Direct Connect works fine. Also, I love Miranda, I really do. I used it for a couple days and I must say, it's better than Gaim on Windows. However, I couldn't get over the fact that because they use the TOC protocol and not the OCSAR protocol, I couldn't view my contacts away message. It might sound silly, but that's the only reason I switched back to Gaim. Once OSCAR is supported, I think I'll probably be ditching Gaim (as long as the folks at Miranda fix some of the bugs that cause the client to crash everytime I try and configure something). Cheers.

Thanks for GAIM and all it's offsprings (3, Informative)

xiando (770382) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350974)

What I really like about Gaim is the libraries, they have been the basis for many other excellent tools. Like BitlBee http://www.bitlbee.org/ [bitlbee.org] , a very nice gateway that allows you to talk to anyone using anything through your irc client. Aterm + Screen + Irssi is my personal favorite communication's suite.

BitlBee Guide - Talk to msn, icq and jabber contacts using any IRC client: http://linuxreviews.org/software/irc/bitlbee/ [linuxreviews.org]

1.0.0, my tail feathers (0, Troll)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350989)

Since I use the MSN network more than any other IM network, I cannot recommend GAIM to anyone. It drops connections all the time and displays a big, mandatory connect window whenever it tries to reconnect. It's always reporting inconsequential errors in a system window that cannot be disabled. I had to terminate the client while watching a movie during an internet outage because it kept superimposing messages over BSplayer every 5 minutes. The file manager is absolute garbage, and the directory shortcut buttons point to ridiculous places. The only unique feature I like is sorting contacts by log size.

GAIM is nowhere near ready for 1.0. Maybe it is tolerable if you use Linux and have no other option, if you have low standards, or you must support freeware at any (no) cost. If you use Windows, Trillian is superior in every way.

Re:1.0.0, my tail feathers (1)

erikharrison (633719) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351155)

GTK had issues on Win32, expecially early on. This made Gaim hard to use, and I had lots of periodic crashes. On Windows, I _still_ prefered it to Trillian.

I wanted to use Trillian so bad, but it had one of the worst interfaces I have ever used. Period. Those of you getting ready to yell at me, are you using .78, the free version, or are you using 1.x the pay version? The pay version's only signifigant advantage to me was the interface didn't suck ass. "nowhere near ready for 1.0" - Ha! Apparently neither was the free version of Trillian, in the developer's mind.

Gaim's core is stable and fabulous. It's the basis of just about every instant messaging client outside of windows.

As for your complaints about MSN, I wonder how many of those are parts of the protocols design that the maintainer speaks of. I left MSN because I had problems with the MSN client and with Trillian - contant disconnects, and obscure errors.

Re:1.0.0, my tail feathers (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351233)

Not to be overly hostile... but have you looked thru the prefs and noticed that you can tell it not to reconnect if the connection drops. That would have solved your problem. Also it's not Gaim's fault that they have to hack, the constantly changing, MSN protocol, go yell at Micro$hit for that. Tell them to make the protocal an open API. I will agree that the file manager needs some work. The mandatory connect window that you were complaining about works fine in linux, at least for me, but I run IceWM and have it set not to strict focus undermouse and not to raise windows unless I move my mouse into them. So again a problem with something other than Gaim.

Re:1.0.0, my tail feathers (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351404)

But the reconnection feature could be so handy without being irritating. Every other IM client will try and silently reconnect, not pop up 3 Windows every 4 seconds just to say it still can't get a connection. It really is poorly done.

His comments on distro (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10350996)

Debian is his fav distro cause it flexible?

Lam0r.

WTF? He obviously not using the proper CFLAGS to maximize his Gentoo experience.

Perzonally, for my optimum system I use
-03
fomit-frame-pointer
-funroll-loops

When you want extra Mhz add
-pipe

To take advantage of the long dual channel pipline on modern processors.

With CFLAGS and USE flags gento allows for maximize custom flexibility that maximizes your hardware.

I like everything optimized not use what some authority says is the way the package is compiled. WTF?

Source based system is so stable and solid because it has just what you need optimised for your specs.

WTF?

-fomit-brain

WTF?

Anyone know? (1)

knewman_1971 (549573) | more than 9 years ago | (#10350999)

Did they ever fix the issue with global away messages? (Issue being that there weren't any!) That was the one thing I always hated about Gaim, and the reason I never even bothered with the Windows version when I switched back to the dark side.

Phonegaim? (4, Interesting)

Goonie (8651) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351038)

The Lindows people have hacked voice chat into gaim. They've called it PhoneGaim [linspire.com] , and they claim they'd like to merge this into the main gaim tree.

This functionality would be extremely nice to have. Does anybody know if there actually any plans to make this merge happen?

Why Sean is such an Asshat to Gentoo Devs/Users? (1, Funny)

fire-eyes (522894) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351094)

Darn, I wish I had known this was going to happen, I'd have asked him why they're such asshats (especially Sean) to Gentoo devs and users.

This mainly stems from this bug [gentoo.org] .

Re:Why Sean is such an Asshat to Gentoo Devs/Users (0, Flamebait)

Quattro Vezina (714892) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351416)

Heh. ``Asshat'' is the perfect word to describe what Sean acted like there.

I found that out a few months ago, and it's one of the two reasons I no longer use Gaim.

The other reason I've switched is that, as of KDE 3.3, Kopete has become far more usable--it's not as mature as Gaim yet, but it's certainly better than it was, and it's sufficient for what I use it for.

Gaim on debian?? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351106)

Debian is his fav distro cause it flexible?

Lam0r.

WTF? He obviously not using the proper CFLAGS to maximize his Gentoo experience.

Perzonally, for my optimum system I use
-03
fomit-frame-pointer
-funroll-loops

When you want extra Mhz add
-pipe

To take advantage of the long dual channel pipline on modern processors.

With CFLAGS and USE flags gento allows for maximize custom flexibility that maximizes your hardware.

I like everything optimized not use what some authority says is the way the package is compiled. WTF?

Source based system is so stable and solid because it has just what you need optimised for your specs.

Just don't use GroupWise... (1)

generationxyu (630468) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351119)

Or anyone can overflow the keyword buffer when it's parsing RTF messages.

"Oh, but GroupWise uses SSL so it's not vulnerable to attack..."

But gaim doesn't check the cert.

"Oh, but you can plainly see, in the unchecked for loop that overflows keyword, it only allows alphabetic characters, so you couldn't put shellcode in it."

But the x86 has several instructions that pass isalpha(). Use GroupWise on gaim and ride my 'AI' NOP sled.

so talented (1)

The_reformant (777653) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351143)

wow! and he can code too...who'd have thunk it http://www.machinehead1.com/bio.html

Miranda (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351176)

Miranda [miranda-im.org] is a trillion times better.

Re:Miranda (1)

sik0fewl (561285) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351390)

Oh yeah.. well.. Trillian [trillian.cc] is.. uhh.. a trillian times better.

PS: I use gaim

IM test bots? (1)

rduke15 (721841) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351188)

Never tried IM before. Are there some IM test bots around, with whom I could have a little chat to try it out?

Maybe someone like Eliza [manifestation.com] ? My regular therapist being on holidays...

Re:IM test bots? (2, Informative)

Quattro Vezina (714892) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351363)

Well, I know that AIM has SmarterChild. Dunno about other networks tho.

Only one minor problem (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351215)

It's the same one I have with firefox. I use this on my libretto, which has a 800x480 screen. The hard-coded configuration window is taller than that.

It would be nice if the config window came up at a reasonable size.

This seems like it could be an issue as IM seems like one of the 'killer apps' for smaller computers.

Why abandon GTK1? (2, Interesting)

evilviper (135110) | more than 9 years ago | (#10351287)

I just wonder why the GTK1 branch was abandoned... I'm sure there's plenty of people like myself why use all GTK1 programs, and aren't going to install another library, that uses up lots of memory, needs entirely seperate themes installed and configured, etc.

It's not as if all projects are getting rid of GTK1 in order to support GTK2. gtk-gnutella is a good enough example of that.

Also, there are lots of popular programs that are GTK1-only... GMPlayer, Sylpheed, GPA, AxYFTP... I could go on forever. Why force people to load-up multiple toolkits when maintaing GTK1 support wouldn't be terribly difficult? Surely you wouldn't decide to switch to a (dynamic) Motif-only version, and leave GTK1/2 users behind...

I'm personally sticking with 0.59.8

"24-year" and "we are poor kids" (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10351296)

man, I don't know many kiddies who own a couple of mitsubishi 3000GT and they even have some money to throw away on powerhorses for such bi-turbo machine.

He abso-fucking-lutely must have been giving his ass for some bucks... You all, let's try his way!
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