Feet up! : jabber

Google Talks, or at least Jabbers

Google Talk on PsiNice to see Google’s much vaunted IM solution finally break cover as Google Talk, and under the covers their IM is a Jabber / XMPP solution. The only real shame so far is the odd slightly odd setup of the whole thing.

For instance, as Mark notes the JID is of the form user@gmail.com and the server is talk.google.com – most other Jabber servers use the same addresses for both i.e. user@example.com on example.com – still this isn’t a show stopper for many Jabber clients, and Google provide details for using these, or you could of course use Google’s own client if you’re on Windows.

Google Talk Setup on PsiI found the supplied details for Psi didn’t actually work, to get it working I had use SSL encryption and allow plain text logins on port 5223 rather than the suggested port 5222 (thanks Pedro), the revised details (as shown in the dialog box on the left) being as follows:

The other odd things are Google’s insistance on a restricted federation approach rather than the conventional open Jabber server-to-server communication, SPIM (Instant messaging’s version of SPAM) is not a problem on Jabber for architectural reasons, so retricting Google Talk users to a walled garden seems rather lame and a complete contradiction of their stated aims of service choice. Maybe this will change, I certainly hope so. The only folks in my Google Talk roster are also in my far larger Jabber roster, guess which I’ll use out of choice…

Btw, I’ve noticed that my publicised JID is a little out of date, my primary JID these days is jimh(at)jabber.org.uk and I’ll be using TacoJim(at)gmail.com for testing for a while, feel free to ping me is I'm marked as available.

[Wed, 24 Aug 2005 22:33] | [] | #

Jabber Client Wanted

I'm on the look-out for another good Jabber client that runs on Symbian Series 60 phones.

I've been using Agile Messenger for quite a while and it's a nice product, but it's got a few minor niggles and the latest version has dropped Jabber support altogether, so I'm stuck with an old version for now. Kudos however to Agile for providing a pretty good product for free and to their tech director for replying to my query about Jabber support in the latest version in under 30 mins. Brickbats for dropping IM's premier protocol though.

Suggestions for an alternative?

[Fri, 28 Jan 2005 12:59] | [] | #

Jabber Weather

Chatopus has a nice article about using bots with a Jabber client and introduced me to a couple of new (to me at least) bots.

weather statusMy favourite is the weather service, add <CITY-CODE>@weather.jabber.zim.net.au to your Jabber roster, and this user will display the current weather at that location in their status. To find your the city code, go to weather.yahoo.com for example, and use the code that forms part of the url as the user part of the Jabber ID e.g.

CityCodeJID
San Francisco USCA0987 USCA0987@weather.jabber.zim.net.au
London UKXX0085 UKXX0085@weather.jabber.zim.net.au

The city code's pretty simple to find out, and it's a nice lightweight way to find out the current weather.

[Thu, 28 Oct 2004 22:23] | [] | #

Where's Jabber heading?

An interesting proposal from Peter St. Andre on where Jabber should be going, he's suggesting that the core protocols are basically sane (I've not dug into them in enough depth to find significant holes in that argument), and that what's holding Jabber back is the lack of a standard client and server.

His idea is because so many of the current servers and clients appear to be small-ish half finished projects, and concentrating the efforts from these dozens of projects into one master project may be far more fruitful. I'm thinking tower of Babel, but you never know, with a little co-ordination and ego-soothing this may be possible.

I think some of the current clients are actually maturing nicely, Psi and Exodus are certainly very usable, so I'm not sure about the demand for a standard client. However, perhaps something simple and moderately lightweight would be ideal as a introductory client. I myself used Jabber Inc's old client for a long time because it was simple and worked.

One thing that Peter suggested that does sound really useful is for the standard server to be aimed at a small to medium size organisations, and I also think writing this in Python is a good choice. Yes, I'm a Python fan, but I'm also a C++ developer and I'm thinking of the multi-platform issues, which Python has far fewer than many other languages.

David Thomson's also got a few thoughts about the proposals which follow on quite nicely from his earlier thoughts about Gibber (Google and Jabber). Peter follows up too, and he also seems to be veering away from a standard client a little.

One further thought on the standard client/server, should there be a reference implementation of the Jabber standards? I.e. from a users' point of view they wouldn't necessarily be the nicest or best to use, but for a Jabber developer the protocol handling would be a textbook example of how to do things. I suspect a well designed and very usable fully standards compliant client/server would be more far better.

Stop Press: Having just talked dwlt through connecting to a few transports with Psi it seems to me that the requirement for a simple easy-to-use working client is paramount.

[Mon, 16 Aug 2004 13:54] | [] | #

Blogging via a Bot

What can I say, it's too trivial by half to blog via Jabber, nice one Roberto!

Update: Roberto's original post appears to have vanished into the mists of time, but the Wayback Machine has a copy

[Fri, 23 Jul 2004 16:42] | [] | #

IM giants offer half-hearted inter-op

Too little, too late...

AOL, Yahoo And MSN To Integrate Messaging say the headlines; the small print gives a different tale. To actually get this integration one has to buy and run some server software from Microsoft that then passes IM traffic to AIM, Yahoo, and MSN.

This form of setup can be useful in an enterprise scenario. But, it can already be done using an in-house Jabber server with gateways to the other services, so this is hardly news. The press release mentions how vital logging of IM traffic is in the financial business, but omits the essentials like SEC compliance!

Jabber has been able to provide SEC compliant archiving since January 2002, so AIM, MSN, and Yahoo are still playing catch up.

[Thu, 15 Jul 2004 09:10] | [] | #

Yahoo! Playing! Dumb!

Yahoo blocked third party instant messenger applications from using their network yet again, something that all three of the locked-in networks seem to do with monotonous regularity and futility.

As Jeremy Zawodny (a Yahoo employee) pointed out this is a fundamentally pointless exercise, with significant echos of the major failings of DRM, in that the blockage gets worked around quickly and the temporary inconvience also actively encourages people to leave Yahoo as their IM of choice. In fact, Trillian users can already get around the block by getting a new patched version of the popular client. Neil Turner reports that the Gaim client and Jabber gateways were also not significantly inconvenienced by the blocking. It makes you wonder why Yahoo bothered with the exercise.

[Thu, 01 Jul 2004 13:55] | [] | #

Jabber Roundup

Most of this has been sitting in my backlog for too long, but given that Jabber Journal #18 came out yesterday and mentioned some of them, here's a chance to pop some goodies off the stack.

First off Jabber IRC integration, the journal goes into more depth, but I've found the irc.jabber.org.uk IRC transport most useful. Simply try to join a Jabber groupchat with say #mobitopia%irc.freenode.net as the room name (pick a channel, any channel), and Bob's your uncle, easy integration, nice!

Stuck behind a firewall? Jabber80 run a Jabber server on port 80 (and 443), ideal for those moments when you just can't use the standard Jabber ports, indirectly it's yet another way to use IRC from behind the firewall too.

Kiwi Java hero and king of the curry, Talios has joined the elite and become a member of the Jabber Software Foundation. He let me have a tinker with his Jabber SMS transport recently, very easy to use and something I'd have killed for in the days before my phone had a Jabber client.

Psi 0.9.2 comes out, my preferred desktop client just keeps getting better.

In other (old) Jabber news - Jabber Inc and EBS announce joint solution: EBS are the big hitters in the foreign exchange trading world, and many of their solutions are XML based, so it's a natural fit. Nice to see Jabberbeing validated in this way. AOL opens ICQ interface, but does anyone care any more? Too little and too late, if they wanted to announce something smart they should have thought about migrating to and supporting Jabber.

[Wed, 16 Jun 2004 13:28] | [] | #

Jabber grows and grows

Jabber Instant Messaging User Base Surpasses ICQ - 4 million paying customers and 6 million open source users sounds great. It'll certainly add some mass to the Foaf World when Jabber transfer user identity from vCard to Foaf, as Jabber documentation guru Peter Saint-André seems to be planning.

The ghetto-isation of MSN and Yahoo! is only going to aid the transition of people to the open IM world, and with IM clients like Trillian joining the revolution, it can no longer be said that all Jabber clients suck.

[Wed, 24 Sep 2003 13:41] | [] | #

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