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AIMing for the Web

I guess API’s don’t warrant press releases. This announcement attracted almost no coverage, except a lengthy piece from Om Malik.  The news is simply this: AOL has now built a web API for the OpenAIM program, allowing presence to be queried and messages to be exchanged from a web page.

Esoteric, perhaps, but very important for developers.  At iotum, we use presence APIs to populate the iotum Relevance Engine with availablity data.  iotum is one the mashup applications that Om talks about in his piece.  The biggest headache for us?  Except for Skype, there have been no server-based presence APIs from any of the big IM companies.  What that means for our customers is that they must install our client on every personal computer or device that they wish to use to signal presence changes to iotum. 

OpenAIM for the Web is a huge step in the right direction.  What we need next is a subscription mechanism, rather than a simple polling system.

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