Artist Miranda July lets you spy on celebrity e-mails

Ever wish you could peek inside someone else's e-mail inbox? Say, your boss'? Your girlfriend's? Lena Dunham's?

Actually, you can (well, Dunham's, at least).

For the next several months, performance artist, actor, and director Miranda July is giving the world a look at private e-mails written by celebrities, including the star of "Girls"; NBA great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; actress Kirsten Dunst; and Israeli writer Etgar Keret.

The project, called "We Think Alone," aims to explore the way people present themselves in online communication and how that may or may not differ from their non-digital personae. … Read more

IM tools for the chattering class

Even though it's been around almost as long as the modern Web, instant messaging is still a great way to send short communication bursts without tying your ear to a telephone. But with great utility comes buckets of options: Do you use Yahoo IM? AOL IM? MSN? Google Talk? ICQ? What do you do if your parents are on one service, but everybody at your office uses a second, and your friends are all on a third?

Nobody wants to be logged in to half a dozen different chat programs simultaneously, which is where multiprotocol apps come in, to … Read more

One IM to rule them all?

Editor's note: This is Part One of a two-part series on multinetwork IM clients. Don't worry, we haven't forgotten about all-in-one Web and mobile chatting.

There's a lot to chat about in the multiprotocol IM universe. Pidgin just debuted as a full-fledged version 2.0, replacing the much-loved Gaim. Trillian is gearing up to wow us all with its gleaming browser-based Astra version, and every day more and more plug-ins pop up to make this breed of protocol-bridging IM clients more extensible and functional.

If you're still logging into three separate chat services to contact your friends, it's time to consider these consolidated options.… Read more