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New beta of Babble Client (and related packages) released

| categories: babble, plone

After spending a few months acclimatising to a new life and continent, I'm happy to be productive again. I've released a new beta version of Babble.Client and other packages.

In the last 6 months, my girlfriend and I went backpacking in South America and then we moved continents to go live in South Africa after having stayed in Germany for a while. To be honest, we completely underestimated the amount of effort involved in adapting and integrating into our new environment and the amount of admin that was waiting for us after having lived without any significant responsibilities for 4 and a half months while backpacking.

We had virtually no worldly possessions except for our backpacks (and some boxes in storage), and needed to get a place to stay and some office space for me.

Needless to say, it took us a while to get back on our feet and for me to get into a good working rhythm again.

New packages released:

So, I'm happy to finally be back in the swing of things and to be releasing new updates to some of the packages I help maintain.

I've released new versions of the packages in the Babble suite, specifically worth mentioning is the new beta version of babble.client (1.4b1) which provides support for email usernames (available in Plone 4).

Together with the client release, I had to release new versions of the messaging server: babble.server (0.3.1), actionbar.babble (0.1b1), a package which provides Babble integration for the actionbar.panel, and also a new version of collective.js.blackbird (which I use for Javascript logging). You can use babble.demo (0.2) to quickly set up a prototype environment in which to test Babble.

Improvements and new features:

I've gotten a few requests for new Babble client features the last months, for example the ability to broadcast chat messages and to restrict contacts to certain groups. Some of the smaller requests, I've implemented in my spare time (such as better URL handling in messages, and making the portlet header configurable), but others would simply take up too much of my valuable free time to implement. I would however be happy to assist anyone considering implementing these features themselves.

Some improvements I would like to eventually implement myself are better Javascript testing (for which I need to remove all DTML statements) and the ability to push messages to the client via something like comet (instead of polling).

There are going to be some PloneSA sprints coming up in the Cape Town area here in South Africa where I would hopefully be able to work on some of these areas.

As always, contributions are very welcome, thanks to Cleber J. Santos for fixing some Plone 3 compatibility bugs!

That's it. The Babble documentation is here: http://babblechat.org

Feel free to contact me with questions or suggestions!