Messenger Addons

Since the new version of Messenger 9, none of the major Messenger add-ons have been updated to support it: I myself have attempted to port the current StuffPlug 3 code to WLM9, but concluded that there have been so many changes that for it to be fully compatible I’d have to do a re-write. Patchou had made a quick beta compatible with the earlier WLM9 beta, but he hasn’t posted anything on his own forums since December, and as far as I know his latest version of Plus! is not compatible with the (January released) WLM9 Release Candidate. Messenger Discovery only states “limited support for 9.0”, and to top it all off all current patches (with the notable exception of A-patch, who did a limited version) are not compatible with the new messenger file format.

Basically I think that the comment absorbation made on my earlier post was probably dead on: everyone seems to have moved on to other projects. I’ve seen my own interest in Messenger getting lower at times, resulting in no updates for StuffPlug, but now it’s not only me: even Patchou, the one person who’s kept updating Plus! for ages even when SP and MD would not, seems to be moving on to other projects.

I sometimes wonder how it is that old developers are moving on while no new ones are taking any interest in Messenger anymore. Is messenger development going too slow? too fast? is it because they completely abandoned all the APIs available? Is it because the messenger team has been more and more secretive, and the only real outwards communication being mainly focused on normal users while no longer appealing to developers? I’d really love to hear people’s opinions on this, and would be especially interested in hearing what people at Microsoft think of it. Please, if you read this and have any thoughts about this subject at all, share them with us through the comments below.

On a slightly different note, I’d like to comment on what warmth said in reply to an earlier post. Yes, StuffPlug currently is pretty much dead: the code I have is just no longer compatible with the changes in WLM9, and I’d have to start a re-write sometime. Problem is that most of StuffPlug’s features aren’t really relevant anymore on Messenger 9, and so trying to re-write the entire beast for WLM9 won’t really get me anywhere. I’d much rather start off with something small and build it up from there, much like StuffPlug was in the beginning. So if you have anything, anything at all, that bothers you about Messenger 9, please do tell me, and it might spark that required bit of passion to start working on something again.

As for helping development of other projects; I have actually helped and contributed to both Plus! and MD in the past, and if I can help them again I’d still love to, but setting up an environment for different people to work on the same (hobby) project takes time and effort, and I’m not sure either of us are really ready to make that kind of effort.

So, if you read this: please do leave a comment if you have any views on the whole lack of third-party development on Messenger 9, or if you have something that you’d like to see changed in Messenger 9 by a third-party add-on.

7 thoughts on “Messenger Addons”

  1. There is one feature in particular I’m missing of Stuffplug: the Timezone Clock, where you could set your contact’s timezone so you’d know what time it is at his/her end.

    1. you got one thing I miss it too… 😛 I also miss personlized time stamps (better than the one in WLM and actually in the new and some other small features (fake invites, block talking, action texts, boost char limit to more then MP!L does, etc…) but what I do miss the most is the ability to edit the PSM from the CL without open the Options… 🙁

  2. The answer:
    1. Write your own IM Client
    2. ?
    3. Profit!

    — Edit by Frans-Willem
    Here’s Jonathan’s reply from when I asked him to clarify what he meant:
    lol, just that if messenger third party dev is dead then it’s time to make a new client to develop on
    one that doesn’t treat it’s citizens as 12-year old girls

  3. I haven’t tried The New Version of Microsoft’s Client yet.I’m so busy now that i really have no time to do that, but i want to explain my thought about the development of add-ons for messenger.In my way of thinking,as a potential developer,there would be lots interested people like me on making something more advanced than a simple script(like mines)but they would have no time or knowledge to do that,at least alone.I could offer my collaboration on helping the development of something,but i completely agree with you when you said “and I’m not sure either of us are really ready to make that kind of effort.”. The interest on messenger is getting lower,i don’t know neither if i will update my scripts.I hope SP will live again,it’s the addon i like better.I really will miss feature like chat-name(so much that probably i would write some stuff to have that on 9 version).

  4. I very understand what you explained… but then you should make this whole thing clear in forums to avoid this kind of things:

    I am kinda sad because your decision but I support you on it cause you make a good point… I hope you find something in the future that makes you get excited about and let us know what is this with a great software release 😛

    always to help… warmth 😉

  5. The developers are not creating Windows Live Messenger with add-ons in mind. The lack of new API functions, dropping the add-ins feature, and dramatically changing the skinning engine several times over has meant Messenger is no longer about customisation.

    It seems MSN Messenger was a fun, quirky IM client all teenagers used, but Windows Live Messenger has become it’s older, mature brother. The development team, along with Windows Live in general, seem to be thinking more about productive and business orientated applications nowadays.

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