I typically use Trillian to handle my ICQ, AIM, MSN and Yahoo! Messenger accounts so I don’t need to install each application and have to jump between applications to find my friends (because of course, every big network needs to make their own IM client), but was recently told by a friend of mine about a new application called Pidgin? (supports Windows, Linux, BSD and other Unixes), that has some extended capabilities beyond ICQ, AIM, MSN, IRC? and Yahoo!. It also supports Bonjour, Gadu-Gadu, Google Talk, Groupwise, QQ, SILC, SIMPLE, Sametime, XMPP and Zephyr — which is great since I’ve been looking into Google Talk. If there’s a network I’d prefer to support, it’s Google.
Of course you could use Meebo as well which has support for AIM, Yahoo!, Google Talk, MSN and Jabber… I just don’t care for having yet another browser window or tab open. Working on the web,? I work too much within Browsers and tend to close/open them frequently depending on the task at hand, and I would get quite annoyed if I kept closing the windows by accident. But, if you’re not like me with browsers, that’s a good alternative. Many co-workers swear by it.
I’m still not sure what to think about Pidgin yet. The interface isn’t the greatest in comparison to Trillian, and I don’t use Google Talk yet, so Trillian would work just fine for me until I do need the use for expanded networks. However, for the sake of trying something new – I am going to give Pidgin some more time.