Several people have asked about a chat feature for mojoPortal in the past and I've had my eye on a few ways to implement chat but have mainly been too busy working on other things to try and tackle it because I viewed it as a complex feature to implement. But recently I found out about the Live Messenger Web Toolkit and that seemed to lower the bar so that it was pretty mch low hanging fruit to implement chat. There are actually quite a few things developing in Microsoft Live Services that are very interesting. Much of it was announced at Mix 09, I still haven't watched all the videos but I plan to watch them soon and learn about tha various scenarios that can be implemented. But, so far I have implemented chat and it will be in the coming release of mojoPortal as a built in feature that can be enabled/disabled.
There will be a new "Live Messenger Chat" feature that you can put on a page, as a supplement to the contact form for example and your web visitors will be able to chat with you no matter whether they have a Live Messenger account or not. You will chat using your desktop Live Messenger and the web control will display your availability and if you are online it will allow web visitors to initiate a chat with you.
In addition to the new "Live Messenger Chat" feature that plugs into the content system, you can also enable your site users to have web chat controls on their profile page so that site users can initiate chat with one another. To receive chats a user will need the Live Messenger desktop software but chats can be initiated by web site visitors directly in the web page with no need for a Live account.
I invite you to try the chat here on mojoPortal.com to help iron out any kinks before the release (which I hope to make on Monday). To enable chat on your mojoPortal user profile, visit the "My Account" page using the link at the top (after you sign in), click the profile tab, then click the link that says "Acquire/Refresh a Live Messenger Permission Token" (ok its mispelled in the screen shot but I will fix that before the release)
You'll note that te checkbox is disabled until you have the token. Once you have the token the checkbox becomes enabled and if you check it ans save, the chat will appear on your public profile page like this:
You can see it on my profile here, there are links to member profiles also on the member list page and in the forums.
Now I'm not really big on using chat myself because I'm very busy and generally don't like things popping up and interupting me, so don't expect me to be generally available for chat. I built this feature mainly for others (who have requested it) to use. I'm not going to be using it for support, the forums are much better for that because they are searchable. But it would be great if people could test this out and give some feedback in the forums if you find any problems or have suggestions for improvements. I know lots of you out there use chat all the time whereas I hardly ever use it, so your feedback is important. For me its just a really cool feature that I'll hardly ever use ;-) so I'm not the best judge of it.