Skype Adds Feature That Users Said Would Never Happen

This week marks a new beta version for Skype. I was very interested to see that they have included in this version a “typing indicator”. In other words as you type a message in a chat the other chat parties can see that you are composing a message. This might seem as if it isn’t a big deal, but it has been said and said again in the Skype forums that this would never happen.

The reason that this was supposedly never going to happen is that Microsoft owned the patient for the feature and that Skype would never infringe upon Microsoft’s rights. It would seem that this is not the case. From Skype:

“Ever since the Skype chat feature first came out, we have heard from people who have said that their very lives and the whole earthly existence depends on the chat having a “typing indicator”, and that they won’t be happy until they have it in Skype. 😉 So… the day has finally come. There is now a typing indicator in Skype chat. Hurrah and rejoice.”

Skype 3.1 Beta for Windows – SkypeFind and typing indicators

This is in fact a lesson for those that would claim to know the mind of Skype. In addition to that it gives me hope that they will eventually include the other much asked for feature; to be able to record. Again forum contributors claim that they will never include this because of the legal ramifications. I am not saying that they will include this feature but it sure does make me think that it is a possibility.

As a podcaster being able to record Skype natively would make Skype a killer app. The current methods of recording Skype, both software and hardware are flawed on many counts. The quality, reliability and the pain in the butt factor are overwhelming obstacles for a simple task. It would seem that Skype hold the key to reliable high quality recording. All the apps and hardware solutions are a hack for what is known and Skype themselves know so much more. So how about it Skype, maybe this version?

You can download the latest beta from Skype here.

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Trillian 4: Developers Blog

As people may or may not know. I use Trillian as my instant messenger client. I even payed for the Pro version. The developers have been very, very quiet the last 6 months but now they are offering “tit-bits” on their blog for the faithful.

For people that have never heard of Trillian, it is an IM client that works across all networks. I don’t have all the separate programs running like MSN, Yahoo or ICQ (it also covers Jabba and AOL). I just have one that accesses these networks. So what I do have is an identity for each network and Trillian pulls all these together into one client. The good thing about this is that I do not have to run these separate applications and I am not locked into one network or the other. It has a small footprint and it works well. There are also plug-ins that you can get as well. There is a free version if you want to check it out.

The latest version is version three. For ages now the development team have been very quiet about any further development. The rumblings in the Trillian community have been everything ranging from they are not developing Trillian and they have abandoned the users. To whatever they are working on is going to be so good that we will be blown away. I am not sure what the developers have been doing or what their intentions are. I however do not think that they have abandoned their users. That said one criticism of Cerulean Studios is the fact that they offer very little to reassure the user base that they are working hard in development. They offer a blog entry every couple of months.

The latest is a screen shot of the new version of Trillian. But it is a very lame log in window screen shot. I would have loved to have seen the main screen of Trillian rather than the log in screen! I think this is a bit of a cop out and I think that they could have given users a bit more of a preview.

That said it looks like we might see a new version of Trillian before the end of the year. I know that is a wide projection but Trillian have refused to say when the new version will be out… period. I guess given other companies’ (“Vista”) ability to keep to promised time-lines, you can not disappoint people if you don’t give one!

But hey Trillian dudes give us a bit more than a log in screen!

The other minor thing that they have announced is a name change for version four. That being “Trillian Astra”. Sounds like an Aussie car to me… very funny. That announcement is accompanied by another lame web page… [update: this page now relates to Trillian Astra with previews and Beta testers login – changed from the original time this was posted] …please. I really hope we get more than this “…in the coming weeks”.

Update: Removed dead links and reviewed relevance of links. The reason being is the same links have been used for newer content related to Astra.