Anyone who grew up with the internet knows a thing or two about chat rooms and chatting it up online with people from all over the world. For awhile there, it seemed like the primary function of the internet, thanks to the popularity of America Online (AOL) and their tremendous focus on chat programs, chat rooms and instant messaging services. It was the wave of the future, but in some ways has diminished in popularity since the proliferation of the internet to the general public. But, the chat room and instant messaging culture is alive and well in the modern age of the internet, and will likely remain so because, in the end, people enjoy connecting with each other and learning new things along the way.

It is the modern way to communicate (whether it be via text messaging, social media or chat rooms) and that trend does not seem to be coming to an end anytime soon. Here is a breakdown of some of the most popular chat programs available on the internet:

Digsby (Windows)

Microsoft’s instant messaging service has quickly risen in popularity since its introduction. It uses the traditional instant messaging set-up, but offers countless other perks that largely account for the reason why it is so popular in the first place. The great thing about it is how it consolidates numerous social media and instant messaging platforms into one easy to use program that does it all.

Pidgin (Windows and Linux)

Pidgin is another one of the up and coming chat programs and has a lot of bonus features that makes it very appealing to the chat aficionados. It is an open source program, which appeals to many computer geeks out there, and boasts more than 3 million users, as of 2007.

AIM (Multiple Platforms)

The America Online Instant Messenger program is probably the most used and most popular of all the chat programs available in the computer world. It is definitely one of those oldie, but goody chat programs, as it does not offer nearly the amount of perks and customizable embellishments that the other, newer chat programs boast. But, in the end, the AOL Instant Messenger is still a reliable chat program that gets the job done. Very few people still use their AOL accounts, but for those who do, the AIM is probably one of the best things about it. All you need is an AOL account, which most people still have, although it may be out of commission for the time being, and then you have access to the instant messenger, as well as the other services that AOL mail provides.

Greg is a freelance writer for a host of publications, both online and in print. When he is not writing for work, he spends countless hours chatting it up online with his fellow computer geeks. He is a frequent user, and big fan, of pidgin, and recommends it to anyone that is reading this.

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