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.


Amazing Google Earth Image

This has more than likely don’t the rounds of the Internet but I have just discovered it. This image is a screenshot from Google Maps™. The Coordinates work for Google Earth as well.

The place is between Medicine Hut and Maple Creek in the state of Alberta, Canada.

Exact Location: 50° 0’38.20″N 110° 6’48.32″W

Or click the image for a direct link to the Google Map

Google Maps Image Head

To say that this is amazing is an understatement. What are the chances of a mountain or old creek/riverbed eroding in such a manner as to create a giant carved head that we would recognise or associate with as being human in form? Or is there a bigger story here. By the way I am not convinced that it is a message from aliens but it is interesting. Nature is indeed amazing!

Skype “Dropping” Instant Messages and Calls

Don’t know if anyone else has been experiencing this lately but we had an instance last night where Skype was “dropping” instant messages and not letting calls through.

So last night before we recorded The Global Geek Podcast Seb and I agreed to meet in half an hour. So I instant messaged him after that time and said I was ready when he was. So then I sit there waiting for a response. After a while I start to think, where the hell is he? Then about twenty minutes later I get this call from him on Skype which I attempt to answer and when I do it says “dropped” in the call window. Then another call and this one goes through.

Turns out that Sebastian had been messaging me for the last fifteen to twenty minutes. I did not get a single message. He gave up and tried to call me and succeeded on the second attempt. We chatted and he had been constantly messaging me during that time. He did get my “ready when you are” message. That is to say nothing of the “dropped” call; which seems to be happening more and more.

To this present time I am yet to get the messages that Sebastian sent me. They are lost in the “Skype Cloud” (whatever that is). I could not tell you what is going on here and I do not know if it is happening to anyone else. Could it be the result of the Chinese hackers? Or could it just be the fact that they are trying to accomplish too much at the detriment of the main feature set? I would be interested to know if this is just me or if we are looking at an epidemic here? Let me know.