how about a wwdnbot for aim?

danger, will robinson
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.

(photo via flickr user drp)

17 thoughts on “how about a wwdnbot for aim?”

  1. Dude! That’s a great idea!
    IM is the best way to get in touch with someone, online that is. Quicker than forums, or blogs. All my e-mails have instant notification & messengers to them, and you know what? It’s great to be able to hold a conversation within 1 hour instead of 5 days.
    Ok, exaggeration, but you get the point. A WWdN bot might make me re-dld AIM.

  2. Am I the only one who does not use AIM anymore? I used to use it, but I found that when I logged in, people would start IMing me, even when I did not wanted to be IMed. Likewise, I did not want people to always know when I was at my computer. Now, I start my client once and a great while, but it is pretty rare.
    I kind of feel the same way about cell phones (though I still have one of those). I never understood why people answered them sitting on the shitter.
    As far as bots are concerned, they are kind of cool. It makes me wonder, though, if the AIM landscape will eventully go the way of IRC, where there are more bots than people.

  3. Wil,
    I guess you aren’t quite the Über-Geek after all. Although the Aim API has been closed forever there have been plenty of projects that have figured out the basics.
    So you can easily create an Eliza bot cutomized to your needs combined with the Perl AIM module to create the bot that you want.
    Or you could do it with the libgaim to span multiple protocols even in C or C++.
    Perhaps you could find some l33t haX0r to build you something if you gave out what your specifications were.
    Anything is possible.

  4. In the past I found creating a bot in Perl a good way to go. I’ve got some code I could send to you that’d get you up and running with a basic bot pretty quickly if you’re interested. That way you can get your feet wet and at least see if you want to pursue the C++ route with the new AIM API (or stick with Perl for that matter).

  5. I think the RSSIM thing is the good idea. I use the RSS Jabber bot ([email protected]) and it seems to do the exact same thing you describe.
    So it appears there’s a demand for it, anyway, and some great minds were already thinking alike on that.

  6. Sweet! I’ve always liked the idea of bots for this kind of info retrieval. It has that retro-future AI type of feel. I was trying to poke around with Trillian since it can connect to most of the IM networks and IRC.

  7. Old IRC bot? OLD IRC BOT!?! Uhuh… Mr almost 34… sheesh… old irc bot… what about the new irc bots? are you lumping them in with the old ones?
    Jeez… I resent that… Just don’t let my poor bot Rygel hear you say anything about it…

  8. You might like to take a look at ColdFusion MX7 and the Event Gateways feature. There are several proof-of-concepts out there. “Uncle Ben” Forta even created an IM bot for multiple networks that responds to command queries.

  9. IM Bots

    I was reading a post on Wil Wheatons blog (always a good read) about AIM bots which reminds me once again that I just dont get it when it comes to IM bots.
    The idea is you have a little program at the other end of an instant message serv…

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