KMi's experimental minimalist messenger, MSG, is ready for its first deployment at the forthcoming European Semantic Web Conference. Although the conference itself is a bigger story in its own right, MSG represents a new path for KMi presence and social software research.
In addition to being the first external deployment of our new AJAX Jabber client (no install, no downloads, no setup), MSG leverages KMi's new Wildfire Jabber server – an open source server from Jivesoft that is itself written in Java, and runs anywhere. MSG is also our first 'featureless' messenger: there are no parameters, no settings, no options, no groupchat – just a ready-made conference-only roster, simple presence states, and click-to-chat.
An important capability of this conference-specific deployment is mandatory location-setting: as with BuddySpace, we remain committed to providing location information, and this lightweight interface enables you to select one out of several conference venues, including coffee, bar, and the main conference rooms, represented as a pure text string, so that contacts can locate one another quickly.
But the real excitement comes from the value-added capabilities provided by (a) ad-hoc community messaging for a 4-day event; (b) automatic roster grouping according to interest areas (determined from the conference registration forms), and (c) an experiment in real-time RDF presence-generation for notification services.
MSG, implemented by Chris Denham, represents an evolutionary step away from the richer all-in-one BuddySpace environment, and follows a path towards 'disaggregation and loosely coupled services' hinted at in an earlier story about the BuddySpace Web Client.
And the event itself? ESWC06, The 3rd Annual European Semantic Web Conference, will be held in Budva, Montenegro from the 11th – 14th June, 2006. It will present the latest results in research and application in Semantic Web technologies (including knowledge markup languages, Semantic Web services, ontology management and more). ESWC06, linked below, is chaired by KMi's Deputy Director, Dr. John Domingue.