June 30, 2008 on 1:08 pm | In News | 119 Comments
As you may have heard, Yahoo! Mail is offering new domains for email addresses: ymail.com and rocketmail.com. That means a whole new crop of email addresses that may not have been available as a yahoo.com address are now up for grabs.
These new Yahoo! Mail addresses also act as Yahoo! IDs that let you sign in to other services on the Yahoo! network, including Yahoo! Messenger. When you sign into Messenger, just be sure to type in the entire email address (e.g. email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org) into the Yahoo! ID box, followed by your password.
So if you’ve been thinking about getting a new email address and/or Yahoo! ID, head over to Yahoo! Mail and sign up. During registration, click on the drop down menu to select the domain you want to use (yahoo.com, ymail.com, rocketmail.com).
June 24, 2008 on 11:33 am | In Other services | 38 Comments
I came across a new online service today called dexrex.com whose tagline is “Saving your world one message at a time”. It’s designed to archive your instant message conversations on Yahoo! Messenger, AIM, Windows Live, Google Talk, Skype and Jabber (Windows versions only). It can also archive SMS conversations from your mobile phone, including Blackberry.
I gave it a test run to see how it did with archiving my Yahoo! Messenger conversations. The first step was to sign in with my Yahoo! ID and password. After that, I had to download and install a small Dexrex extension file to enable the capture and archive of my IM conversations in real-time. Installing the extension was painless and immediately, my IM conversations were captured in the background and uploaded to my dexrex.com account.
There is also a link to import your old IM conversations. After installing Java 6 on my PC at their suggestion, a scan was started to find the archives on my PC. It hung and didn’t really work for me, but in theory, you can get your old conversations imported and stored in your dexrex.com account.
Once your conversations are archived, you can use dexrex.com’s search box to quickly find a message. Dexrex has some handy automatic filters like one that lists out web links from your conversations. So rather than trying to remember a website a friend sent, just glance at the “Links” section in the sidebar to find it. They do the same auto-filtering for phone numbers and email addresses that appear in your conversations.
Dexrex also offers the ability to share a conversation with friends. When you click the “Share” link under a conversation, a page appears offering you a URL you can then send out to friends. When friends visit that URL, they’ll be able to read the transcript of your IM conversation on dexrex.com. If you change your mind, there is always a “Stop Sharing” button to make the conversation private again. You can also edit individual conversations to remove lines or to delete the entire conversation.
And finally there is an “Analyze” tab on the site where they’ll show you interesting statistics and trends about your conversations (like the average number of messages you send and duration of your conversations). This part of the site did not load properly for me but it may have been due to me only having a few hours worth of conversations archived.
Dexrex.com can be very handy for helping you organize and access your IM conversations. The search function works well and considering it’s free, it’s a nice add-on to your IM program. Keep in mind that you are storing your private conversations on a website, so if you have concerns about maintaining ultimate privacy, dexrex.com may not be the solution for you. According to their FAQ, all messages transmitted from your PC to dexrex.com via the extension are encrypted and there is an additional “Lockdown” feature you can add to your account for extra protection.
I was impressed by the ease in which I could search, filter, edit and delete conversations. In addition if you change your mind about using dexrex.com, there is a “Delete Account” button under the “My Account” section which will wipe out your archive. If you do that, be sure to also uninstall the dexrex.com extension from your PC to prevent future archiving.
June 20, 2008 on 2:30 pm | In Features, Mobile, Voice | 63 Comments
IM is great for keeping in constant contact with your friends. But eventually, we all have to sign off and as a result, we’re no longer reachable.
But now, with a couple of features available in Yahoo! Messenger 9.0 Beta, you no longer have to sign off and drop off. You can have incoming IMs and voice calls forwarded to your mobile phone. Here’s how it works…
Above your Yahoo! Messenger 9.0 contact list you’ll notice two new buttons – an icon of a small mobile phone and a Yahoo! Voice button. Click on the mobile phone icon and select “Set Up Mobile Device”. A small window will appear where you can register your mobile phone with Yahoo! Messenger.
Once registered, you can turn on IM forwarding. After signing out of Yahoo! Messenger, you will still appear online to your friends but with an “I’m Mobile” status message. Friends can then IM you and the messages will be forwarded to your mobile phone as text messages (SMS). Reply to the SMS from your phone and your friend will receive it in Messenger. So even when you’re away from your computer, you can still receive and reply to IMs.
To enable IM forwarding whenever you sign out, select the “Always Sign in to [your mobile number]” from the mobile phone icon. If you prefer to enable it occasionally, go to the Messenger menu when you’re ready to sign out and choose “Sign in to [your mobile number]”. Find out more about IM forwarding
The same kind of forwarding can be set up for voice calls. If you’re signed out and a friend tries to call you via PC-to-PC or on your Phone In number, the call can be immediately forwarded to another phone you have (mobile or landline). A Phone Out account is required. When calls are forwarded to you, they are subject to the standard per minute rates of our Phone Out service.
To enable call forwarding, click the “Yahoo! Voice” button above your contact list and select “Set Up Call Forwarding”. Indicate which number you want your incoming calls forwarded to and you’re done. Once you set up call forwarding, it will even forward calls when you are signed into Yahoo! Messenger. So if you prefer to receive calls in Messenger when you’re signed in, just return to the button and select “Call Forwarding > Disabled”. Find out more about call forwarding
June 19, 2008 on 4:34 pm | In Mac version, News | 52 Comments
Recently several Mac users have been experiencing issues with setting and viewing the display image. Thanks for the heads up! We’re aware of the issue and are working to resolve it. Until then, sit tight—we know it’s frustrating but appreciate your feedback on this issue.
Yahoo! Messenger Community Manager
Next Page »
June 17, 2008 on 8:02 am | In Features | 50 Comments
A recent comment from a user prompted me to write on this topic. He said:
“You should add a translation program so we can talk to non native speakers in their language but see it in ours” – John
While we don’t have this feature built right in to Yahoo! Messenger, we do offer plug-ins that enable translation or look-ups during an IM conversation. These are conversation plug-ins which are meant to be used with a friend during an IM conversation. Here’s an overview of the translator plug-ins that are available.
Yahoo! IndiChat / ChitChat (Indian)
Launch this plug-in and you can type in English and have your message translated into one of eight Indian scripts (Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Bengali and Gujarati; ChitChat includes Punjabi). As you type, the English characters are displayed in Indian script and when you press the ‘Send’ button, it sends the message to your friend in the selected language.
IndiChat: More info & Install | Try it now
ChitChat: More info & Install | Try it now
Similar to IndiChat and ChitChat, Jhol lets you type your message in various Indian scripts. The main difference is that the Jhol interface includes a keyboard interface as an aid. More info & Install | Try it now
If you’re not a native English speaker and sometimes struggle with the IMs from your friends, Dictionary can help. The plug-in will display the latest message from your friend with links on each of the words. Click a link to see a word’s meaning from one of three sources – Wordnet, Urban Dictionary or Wikimedia. Even if you do speak English well, this can be a fun plug-in to test each other on word meanings. I still enjoy a good game of Dictionary every now and then.
More info & Install | Try it now
Plug-ins are available for Yahoo! Messenger 8.1 and 9.0. You can use plug-ins for your own use (tab plug-ins) or with a friend during an IM conversation (conversation plug-ins). Visit our plug-in gallery to find plug-ins for games, music, entertainment, news, utilities and more.