Jason says that AOL is opening up AIM to third party developers. This is pretty cool, and is a strange coincidence, because I had an idea for an AIMBot yesterday.
Wouldn’t it be cool if you could build your own bot, which would be relevant to your audience, and let them add it to their buddy list?
For example, if I did a WWdNBot, you could talk to it like an old irc bot, by asking it FAQs, or askng it if I had any appearances coming up, or when the next book would be released, or something like that. I could also use it to automatically tell you when I updated my blog, with a link to the entry.
Or how about a FarkBot, which tells you when a new headline hits the main page (with a link) and would tell you about Fark cliches?
Or a SuicidegirlsBot which would tell you when a friend’s journal was updated, a new item was on the newswire, or your favorite girl had released a new photoset?
I know that most of this is just another way of using RSS feed-style information, but doesn’t the interactivity and immediacy of an instant message seem cool?
As I understand it, if you want to hook into the AIM API, you have to cough up a significant fee to AOL, so I don’t see rampant ‘bot development happening any time soon, but if AOL decided to dump the fees (maybe they could add a line after the message that says, "brought to you by [sponsor]" if they wanted to make up for lost fees, and sell the adspace) and a company like blogger or sixapart incorporated some easy to use code for their customers (add "wake up the bot" to "send trackbacks" or whatever), we could have an entirely new — and very cool — method of communicating with each other.
Okay, people who are more tech-savvy than me: tear this idea apart.