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Meebo platform needs to come to XULRunner 2007/10/30

Today Om is reporting that Meebo is launching its own platform for third-party Meebo widgets.  I could care less about the widgets, but could this be a REST API for sending IMs?  No (dammit).

The Meebo API is actually an ingenious bit of Flash with a JavaScript wrapper that talks to Meebo.  Once your hosted app gets some params from Meebo, you can do exciting things like listen for new messages.  Through the same JavaScript-wrapped Flash object, you can also send messages.  Praise be!  For more, check out the Meebo JavaScript docs, which are minimal to say the least.  Oh well, there's sample code.

A couple weeks back, Instantbird did a lap around the Internet.  I must call failure here, because when I tried to sign into Yahoo! Messenger it crashed immediately, spectacularly and consistently (tried four times).  I know what you're thinking: but Yahoo! Messenger is a closed system, of course there will be problems.  Yeah, but Adium is built on the same library and pretty much always signs in happily (but never, ever shows me when Cal is online).

Seeing as Instantbird is built on XULRunner (my new life partner), a nice JavaScript way to send IMs would be just sweet.  From my limited research, it seems embedding Flash in XULRunner is possible, as is opening a browser window within Instantbird to snag the authentication params from Meebo.  Then it's smooth sailing.  Maybe.

The glaring hole in all of this is that while you can sendMsg to your heart's content, thus far you have no one to send to.  This isn't a full-blown API, folks.  It's a widget platform.  There's no way to get at someone's buddy list.  Back to libpurple, I suppose.  But if Meebo made the rest of their service available as a REST API (to complement the far superior Flash method of sending/receiving messages), I'd be sold.

Comments (4)

  1. "I must call failure here, because when I tried to sign into Yahoo! Messenger it crashed immediately, spectacularly and consistently (tried four times). I know what youre thinking: but Yahoo! Messenger is a closed system, of course there will be problems."

    No, you don't know what I'm thinking. I think you should file a bug report and send us a stack trace.

    Florian Quze — 2007/10/31 12:20 pm

  2. It seems you actually didn't know about this before, so I've put in a bug: http://bugzilla.instantbird.org/show_bug.cgi?id=31

    Richard Crowley — 2007/10/31 12:41 pm

  3. Thank you :-).

    Florian Quze — 2007/10/31 12:56 pm

  4. Richard, check out SamePlace and xmpp4moz at http://sameplace.cc.  As far as I can see, what I described/released at http://hyperstruct.net/2006/10/22/instant-messaging-two-point-o was roughly the same API thing, just one year earlier.  :-) (Oh, and it's built on Mozilla.)

    Massimiliano Mirra — 2008/03/25 4:30 pm

Richard Crowley?  Kentuckian engineer who cooks and eats in between bicycling and beering.

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