OS X Native AIM/ICQ Client Available

Epicware has been developing a native OS X version of a multi-dimensional instant messaging applicaiton, Fire. Fire supports simultaneous connections to AOL Intant Messenger, ICQ, and Yahoo! Pager, all from one simple Buddy window. While Fire is not as full-featured as each serviceis individual apps, it does support all of the necessary features and runs natively under OS X Beta, taking full advantage of Betais next generation features. According to Epicware:

What is Fire? It is an Multiplatform Instant Messenger client based off of freely available libraries for each "service". Currently Fire handles AOL Instant Messenger communication, ICQ communication, and Yahoo! Pager communciation. All "services" are built off of gplid libraries, including libfaim, icqlib, and gtkyahoo (linux libraries).

Fire looks like AIM (on Windows at least) but is much much more. It can handle similtaneous connections to ICQ, Yahoo and the AIM network (and I am working on MSN). Fire has been downloaded by thousands of users. Up until recently the ICQ support was very weak, though I hope that Fire 0.12.a fixs all that.

Feature List

  • Can connect to the default oscar server, default micq server, default yahoo pager server
  • Source code provided (GPLid)
  • Can send and recieve messages on 3 services (icq, yahoo, aim)
  • Can set up a buddy list to see whois online (icq, yahoo, aim)
  • Sounds work! Just like in AIM for Windows
  • Saves password and user name if desired
  • uses libfaim, micq and gtkyahoo, all gplid linux libraries, for the connections
  • HTML-ized view. You can send and recieve rich text. (Thanks to Stephen Portnoy) (aim only)
  • Editable Buddy List - including aliases! (icq, yahoo, aim)
  • Buddy List import and export from/to Windows and Unix file formats (aim only)
  • Get buddy information (aim only)
  • Find a buddy (aim only)
  • Connect and Disconnect from any service using a Services dialog
  • A new console for display of service messages (Cmd-Shift-C)
  • When you go idle, idle messages are sent (icq, yahoo, aim)
  • When you go away, status is updated to away (icq, yahoo)

To do list

  • Adding links and background colors to edit windows
  • Sending of urls in icq, yahoo, aim (right now text only)
  • Buddy Information in icq and yahoo
  • Multiuser chat in all services
  • block/warn users in all services
  • Drag input adding of urls
  • Offline message send (icq, yahoo)
  • Adding proxied connects (yahoo first, others later)
  • Yahoo text extension support (right now extensions are removed ...)
  • Better error, login error detection
  • Set your own sounds (right now they are hardcoded)
  • Sending of communications using encryption (user request) - probably PGP
  • Fetching of nics for buddy names (icq)
  • Make communication classes conform to more rigid protocols (code issue)
  • Ability to create new users for within Fire (icq), or link to home page for creation (aim, yahoo)
  • Warning panel when you start up with no services installed
  • Answering machine notation taking ...
  • Invisibility Support (icq, yahoo)

Fire is available for free. You can find more information at the Epicware web site.

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