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Idea for GAIM add-on (maybe a Summer of Code Project)

I think one of the biggest hassles with instant messaging is that it?s tied to the computer. If I?m away from the computer, like watching tv, I may miss an important IM. I can leave the speakers on the PC really loud, but then I?m always jumping up and running back to the PC to read an incoming IM in case it?s important. Most of the time it?s not. I can subscribe to a service with my cell phone?but that costs money. So here is (I think) the perfect solution, and a good GAIM plug-in that?s not too much work.

I just installed a Pluto Home system (plutohome.com). It?s a free, open source smarthome and media server. You put Bluetooth dongles on all the pc?s in your house, and then when you enter a room your Symbian Bluetooth phone turns into a remote control for everything in that room. It already tracks your movement?if you start listening to music in 1 room, your music will follow you as you move with your phone to another room. And it already sends messages to the phone based on events. For example, when the song changes, the cover art shown on my phone changes to show me what?s playing.

So that got me thinking? Why not make a GAIM plugin for pluto so that whenever I get an IM, I see it on my Bluetooth phone? That way I can either type a reply on the phone, or go back to the computer if I want to use the keyboard, or ignore it if it?s not important. And I?m not having to run back and forth to the computer to check IM. And it?s free since it uses Bluetooth! Plus, I think it?s such a real convenience it would be a great way to get people to switch to GAIM.

I talked to the programmers at Pluto and they said it would be really easy since their stuff is already written in small modules and plugins. However, since we?re all open source, we could also just take whatever pieces were useful and do something completely new using the same concept.

Many of the other GAIM projects listed are either specific for only some users (like Apple iChat), or would only be used by geeks (like the Perl interpreter). But not having to run back and forth to the computer is something everybody wants (imho). I don?t see how to recommend a new idea for GAIM, so I?ll just try the forums and hope somebody else likes it too.

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