Introduction to Instant Messaging

What is Instant Messaging (IM)? IM is a way for you to communicate instantly with your friends over the Internet. That might not sound so different to email. Have you ever noticed how cumbersome it is to have a brief conversation via email? You have to click Reply to each message, then find the right spot in the message to type something new, then send it. Then you have to wait for the next message to arrive! IM lets you to have a conversation almost as naturally as on the phone or face to face, by typing messages into a window shared between you and your friend's screens.

Another difference between IM and email is that with IM you can see your friends' presence, that is, whether they are actually on-line at the same time as you. This lets you send messages truly instantly, instead of sending off a mail and having to wait for your friend to check their mailbox. An IM message pops up on the other person's screen as soon as you send it. Of course, if you'd rather not be interrupted, you can change your own presence so others will know not to disturb you.

There are lots of other fun and useful IM features you can explore with Kopete, like group chats, file transfers and emoticons that reflect your mood. Read on to find out more!