April 25, 2000
7:16 PM   Subscribe

There's a new version of icq out, although it looks like they're pretty close to their limit on adding buttons to the interface.
posted by mathowie (19 comments total)
nope, they've still got the left-hand side. I really hate those buttons, because the only one I use is the button that makes me n/a (and that's on half the time). They should really learn how to use menus more effectively. I wonder how long it is until they start charging, we're gonna have to use MSN Messenger after that, or even worse...AIM...*shudder*
posted by starduck at 7:52 PM on April 25, 2000

I don't like it. Too many buttons, too much going on. Rah, rah shish boom - HA! Gave me a headache, rejected my password, made me sofreakingfrustrated I uninstall the whole damn thing. But it was the rejecting of my password that did it.

Sometimes clean good old fashioned fun is best.
posted by velvett at 8:24 PM on April 25, 2000

All in all, I think they have the worst GUI of any software I have ever used (at least the Mac version) -- default the wrong buttons, inconsistently labelled things, stacks sometimes, rows sometimes, impossible menus, etc. Sometimes I wonder if they do it deliberately.
posted by sylloge at 8:24 PM on April 25, 2000

Still using 99a Beta 2.24 and I love it. =)

There is Jabber, but it's still in the development stage right now and not that many people use it.
posted by hobbes at 8:24 PM on April 25, 2000

In the advanced options, I got my icq interface down to a bare minimum, which is just a couple more buttons than before (their simple mode removes all buttons and is a bit much as there's no online/offline list filter button). I still can't figure out how to remove the "ToDo" taskbar icon, which I don't ever remember enabling or using in the past.
posted by mathowie at 8:36 PM on April 25, 2000

Yep, they've tied the online/offline filter to the bloody mail/web top buttons, which is a right pain in the arse.

ICQ for Bigfoot is a healthily stripped-down version if you're not bothered with the featurebloat of later versions, but it uses the old-style database, so if you're already using 99b or 2000a, it won't find your preferences and message history.
posted by holgate at 8:48 PM on April 25, 2000

There's also Odigo, a somewhat different approach, but it's overly graphical and takes a little getting used to.

About ICQ though.. Did anyone else notice that their web site got nominated for a Webby Award?! They're in the community section, so go on over and vote in the People's Voice section for anyone but them (and Slashdot! ;)
posted by valerie at 8:56 PM on April 25, 2000

Hmmm... I'm using Win98 and I downloaded it and I've somehow stripped it down so it actually looks a bit more bare than the previous version. I don't use the online/offline filter, so I could get rid of that too. Of course, I usually keep it minimized and just drag the names of my "important folk" (ie, the bf) up to the top of my monitor.
posted by stefnet at 9:04 PM on April 25, 2000

Gah. One thing though...

Thank you ICQ for informing me that this is, in fact, "My Contact List" for your program. I wasn't particularly aware of what all these names and little flowers were and was getting scared. But then I looked up at the top of your program and was instantly reassured that I had chosen to chitchat with these people.

posted by stefnet at 9:11 PM on April 25, 2000

I concur with pretty much everyone else: no; they've passed their limit on adding buttons, quite a while back.

I'd like to like Jabber, but their "we'll add the security and privacy on later" attitude bothers me greatly. Notably, the idea of my contact list living on their server, unencrypted, gives me the willies.

Is it just me?

So many things are just me.
posted by baylink at 6:31 AM on April 26, 2000

I hate to say this, but you are so wrong. There is plenty of room for more buttons.
posted by plinth at 7:16 AM on April 26, 2000

Much more room. I mean, what the heck am I using the rest of that 1280x1024 space for?

It is ironic that the advanced users prefer the stripped-down version. Methinks they're doing precious little end-user testing to come up with "simple" and "advanced" modes where "advanced" has more crap than any sane individual would want to use.
posted by dhartung at 8:27 AM on April 26, 2000

Too funny, Plinth.

And I agree with Dan; while I *do* use advanced mode, I usually turn off almost all the chrome.

I hope the Jabber people a) get their security/privacy design problems fixed, and b) have a skinnable client.
posted by baylink at 9:31 AM on April 26, 2000

icq is skinnable
posted by starduck at 4:49 PM on April 26, 2000

All I need is a somewhat secure chat client that allows me to send messages like ICQ and also has a chat function. It also needs to archive automatically.

I like ICQ's system of having UINs so that there can be more than one "hobbes," though.
posted by hobbes at 6:23 PM on April 26, 2000

great thing about this version is you can REMOVE all the menus and buttons
posted by prolific at 6:53 PM on April 26, 2000

Hobbes: you've inadvertantly pushed one of my buttons:

Good point. It is a Bad Thing that AOL and MSN conflat chat user id's with email addresses, because they *don't have any way to prohibit a looker from seeing that you're online*, unlike ICQ, which has the Authorize function.

*Just because I know someone's AOL screen name*, I can add them to my AIM list, and know if they're online or not.

That is Not Good.
posted by baylink at 7:19 PM on April 26, 2000

Not that the authorization can't be thwarted. I don't know about the latest couple versions, but I do know of various hacks for a number of older versions that let you add people without authorization etc. But then again, if you use a *nix ICQ client like zICQ (i think?), I'm told you can easily add people without authorization and even hijack accounts or at the very least, receive and send messages from their UIN.
posted by yupislyr at 7:35 PM on April 26, 2000

Yeah, I know... I didn't want to cloud the issue at the time, but you are correct. But from what I gather, Jabber, as it is currently designed, isn't much better.

I've had an email off to their design team inquiring about this for about a week; no reply. <sigh>
posted by baylink at 8:26 AM on April 27, 2000

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