8 March 2006

MSN Live Beta

I have been using the MSN Live beta for just over a month now, and over all,
I quite like it.

There aren't that many new features in this version of Messenger, and I only
really have 1 irritation with it.

So, what are the new features?

* File and folder sharing: this enables one to create a permanently
shared folder with another user, and drag and drop files into this shared
folder. I like this, because it means I can send multiple files to someone
in one go, without having to wait for them to accept them download. I dump
my images (or whatever) into the shared folder, and they can get them as
they are ready. This would be great for distributed teams who collaborate on
projects, and want to share project files without making use of something
like Sharepoint or a CVS server.

* Authorization: You now have more control over what information
your MSN contacts have. You can grant them access to see all your info, or
only specific bits. This could be handy when one has both business and
personal contacts - you don't always want your clients to see that you have
a foot fetish, for example :)

* Contacts information: it is now easier to keep contact
information up to date. If you enter a mobile phone number for a contact,
you can, in theory, also send them a message to their mobile (I have not
tested this, though)

So, what are my gripes?

Actually, I only have one... When clicking on 'Send an Instant Message' from
the menu that pops up when one right clicks on the messenger icon in the
tray, the little 'select contact' window annoys me. It does not display the
contact's status, and the space at the bottom where it lists the selected
contacts always overlaps with the contacts at the bottom of my list.

This is minor, and has not stopped me from using Messenger at all.

I am also a little concerned about the amount of memory (both physical and
virtual) that the messenger uses - but this has been a concern from around
version 6, and it does not use as much memory as, say, Trillian did.

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