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Thread: All new, home-grown from the ground up chat service

  1. #1

    Default Dump AIM/ICQ/MSN/Y! and join the BitWise revolution!

    Hello all,

    My roommate and I finally got sick of all the AIM vs. Trillian battles and all of the code bloat that's occurred in these huge chat clients and decided to write our own. Which is what we've been doing for the past 5 weeks. We've got basic functionality, plus a few luxuries, like offline messaging and invisibility, and we're looking to create a small test group. I'm posting here because I know that the MURC community isn't so huge as to overwhelm us.

    The ultimate advantage to being involved is that you get to help us shape the future of this service through your suggestions. We're very active right now in development and very responsive, and are just looking for some help with testing and thinking about new things to add, and what features should be added first. (Plus the normal bug fixes.) Especially features that don't yet exist in any chat services, we have a couple of good ideas up our sleeves.

    The web site for the project is http://www.bitwisechat.com . You have to request a username, this allows us to keep our user base manageable, although right now we are still actively seeking a decent number of users. Please bear in mind we are college students and don't man the terminals 24/7, but we'll respond ASAP to any requests or emails.

    Thanks in advance!

    PS Anyone know of any special ways to program dualhead stuff? That would be something really fun & cool to add and would certainly be a unique feature! Although I bet it's probably a bit beyond my skills
    Last edited by KevinMU1; 29th March 2002 at 07:47.

  2. #2

    Default Dump AIM/ICQ/MSN/Y! and join the BitWise revolution!

    Update!

    We've made a lot of progress in the past few weeks, including adding file transfers, more preferences and sounds, among many other improvements. Check it out if you've been waiting for any of these features (File transfer was the big one).

    Just wanted to let everyone know that this project isn't going to just die out.

    Kevin

  3. #3
    MS Fanboy Gurm's Avatar
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    Default

    Kevin,

    I admire your dedication. Honestly I do. But I still fail to see the point of this.

    (Note to new readers - this is a continued debate from the VIA Hardware forums...)

    Trillian is small, lightweight, and already lightyears ahead of anything from anyone else, including Yahoo, AOL, or Microsoft.

    Not only that, but the entire POINT of a messenger is to be able to talk to your friends. Since all of my friends use AIM, Yahoo, ICQ, or MSN... I need a messenger that uses those protocols. If I switched to your messenger, well... then I'd need to have TWO messengers running - which is the entire reason I switched to Trillian.

    - Gurm
    The Internet - where men are men, women are men, and teenage girls are FBI agents!

    I'm the least you could do
    If only life were as easy as you
    I'm the least you could do, oh yeah
    If only life were as easy as you
    I would still get screwed

  4. #4

    Default The purpose

    Hi Gurm,

    The point is for us to learn. That's the point for us. We have learned already a million things about programming and client-server design, and project management. And to have some fun along the way.

    The point for anyone else is just to have fun with us, trying something new. I understand that not everyone is going to find this project fun, which is fine.

    In the end, the "large" point, if you will, is to make new features that aren't available anywhere else. These are obviously not available YET, but they will be. For example, just today we implemented the ability to have any offline messages that you've accumulated be sent on to an email address, either per-message or in a digest format, all while being able to specify which users' messages you would like forward (you may not want your annoying Uncle's messages forwarded to you if you plan on checking your email with your cellphone, for example). Eventually we could also auto-forward on-line messages as well, but we haven't gotten that far yet. That's just one example.

    It's about having fun, and learning, and doing something for the sake of learning. Almost everything has been done before, but that doesn't mean everyone knows how to do it. As I stated already, we've learned so much from this, and had a lot of fun in the process.

    Some users have switched to avoid using the large corporate networks. Some people are anti-AOL and anti-Microsoft and anti-Yahoo, just on some principle. Several users have sent me congratulatory notes on the small footprint.

    There is a point for us, and for some people, but there won't be a point for everybody, which we understand.

    If it's not fun, don't do it.

  5. #5

    Arrow

    KevinMU1,

    Don't let Gurm get to you!

    He will never ever get the point your trying to relate!
    If there's artificial intelligence, there's bound to be some artificial stupidity.

    Jeremy Clarkson "806 brake horsepower..and that on that limp wrist faerie liquid the Americans call petrol, if you run it on the more explosive jungle juice we have in Europe you'd be getting 850 brake horsepower..."

  6. #6
    MS Fanboy Gurm's Avatar
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    No no, I get it.

    I object to the whole "ditch your current messenger and come join our revolution" catchphrase.

    Like I said, I respect your goals, and I'm glad you're learning a lot about programming (I actually undertook a similar project recently, but gave up after discovering Trillian).

    My point is only that billing yourself as a competitor to 5 fully established chat programs is a bit silly.

    Now, if you wanted to provide inter-operability with a couple other services... you might very well have a hit on your hands, as I do think your program has great potential.

    - Gurm
    The Internet - where men are men, women are men, and teenage girls are FBI agents!

    I'm the least you could do
    If only life were as easy as you
    I'm the least you could do, oh yeah
    If only life were as easy as you
    I would still get screwed

  7. #7

    Default

    Well if anyone wants to know, I made a messenger myself. It's pretty simple and you communicate through your IP. (ie "Send message to: 10.1.12.171") There is no central server or anything like that. We added a lot of IRC stuff. It is very small too. t was really just a way for my friend and I to cure boredom and learn something at the same time.

    <i>Edited for reduncancy errors</i>
    Last edited by bsdgeek; 7th April 2002 at 10:28.

  8. #8

    Default It's all about the marketing!

    Interoperability is something that could come later, but the whole point of not putting it in was removing the dependence on somebody else, then we don't have the problems like Trillian was having with AOL for a couple of weeks. That was INCREDIBLY frustrating for me as a Trillian user.

    As for billing our program as a competitor to 5 well-established services... that was all a marketing ploy. LOL Nobody responds well to less catchy or intriguing titles. I tried more benign subjects and the responses were almost nil. Sorry if you were offended but it sure caught your attention, eh? See, we're learning a bit about marketing too.

    PS thanks for saying the program has some potential, I appreciate it.

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