AIM, also known as AOL Instant messenger, is still my instant message software of choice; I’ve been using it for what seems like forever and have several hundred contacts in it. Google‘s Gmail has a chat feature built in, no need to download software, so this works in a pinch, but only if the person you are talking to has Gmail and is logged into their email account and / or has a chat client that supports Google Talk. But what if you want to talk to someone on AIM but don’t have the client software installed on the computer you are sitting at, say at work, because your network nazi has prevented you from installing time wasting software.

Don’t fear! Google has integrated AIM into their Chat program, allowing you to login to your Gmail account and contact people on your AIM buddy list. No software to download, it just works. They do suggest you have Internet Explorer 7 or Firefox 2 installed in order to get all the features and functions to work properly, skip IE and go for Firefox.