Trillian Astra Beta - Everything In One Place?

May 14, 2009 by Jason Bean  
Filed under Computers

For the last couple of days I’ve been playing around with the newest version of the Trillian client coming from Cerulean Studios. The new version of Trillian is in beta and is code-named Astra.


Taking a quick look at the screen shot above, let me highlight the different areas I have numbered above.

  1. Twitter integration - the display of the timeline itself could be improved. I’d envision a panel that would slide out from behind the contact list that would display the timeline of events in a fashion similar to twhirl or other twitter client.
  2. E-mail Integration - each of the email accounts associated with my identities can be included and I can receive notifications of new emails to those accounts from within the interface.
  3. Google Talk Integration - as you can see my Google contacts are listed within the UI along with everything else. The only challenge I see here is that I receive the chat window in both Trillian and in my Gmail page as well.
  4. IM Client Integration - all my other contacts on the various networks included below the others.

The different segments and groups of contacts can be shifted and arranged as desired.

This newest version of the Trillian IM client has made great strides in bringing together a variety of new applications and services together into one package and manageable platform. With the new version of Trillian you can manage all of the following in one interface.

Windows Live Messenger, AOL Instant Messenger, Yahoo Messenger, IRC, Google Talk, Twitter, Facebook and even Skype.

That’s actually not all of them, but all of the big ones and ones that really make this outstanding.

The interface options could still use some improvements, or it could be that I’m still just not familiar with how to tweak everything like I like on the system. I like minimal interface options and wasted space, so I’m still trying to make changes to those areas.

In testing the product I’m supposed to be looking for bugs. The good news is I haven’t come across any yet, or at least nothing I’d call a bug. I’ll keep trying though and see what I can find.

Keep reading for a picture of the individual chat window and more of my thoughts.

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Microsoft Live Drive

August 21, 2006 by Jason Bean  
Filed under Computers

What do you do when you accidentally announce something wasn’t quite ready for primetime? If you’re AOL, you stay your very angry that some of your employees released some search information. If you’re Microsoft, you just pull the post down off of one of your employee’s blogs real quick. The problem with the latter is that search engines are just too quick nowadays and Bloglines grabbed a cache of the page before it could be removed.

Either way, we’re hearing that Microsoft is working on an online back-up system called Live Drive (, or maybe it is and someone else is already shortening it.)

Stuart Padley, or “stuartpa” will be working on the mystery team who’s existence seems to be backed up by a variety of sources (Wikipedia & CNN), but here’s what he’s got to say:

After a year of silence, I am coming up for air. We shipped SQL Server 2005 towards the end of last year, I was pleased with what we did in that team. However, I was looking for a challange beyond building server software (I had previoulsy led teams/groups that shipped Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, and Exchange Server 2000). In my search around the company, Ray Ozzie’s Technical Assistant (Kartik) pointed me towards a small team of rengade hardcore architect/developer/test types who had had success in Windows Server land and XBox — who were all united in wanting to tackle a really big problem. So, I moved to this new team, which is all a bit hush hush at the moment, but I guess wikipedia seems to think it knows about it.


I don’t think either of these descriptions are correct. But there are elements of truth. I am very passionate about allowing home users to be able to store and share their digital memories in a seamless, reliable way. It was this passoin which brought me to the team I am working on now. We do have that ’small team magic’, which is one of the great things about working at Microsoft. Small teams that click can achieve massive amounts, and this company has got the balls (and resources) to back them and make it happen.

Anybody know how Microsoft works in these situations? I know if he were an Apple employee he’d already be shakin’ the salt on fries at your local burger joint. Does Microsoft work the same? I think “stuartpa” should probably be a little more passionate in his understanding of just how quickly the blogosphere works.

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