Interview for Jeremie Miller
Jeremie Miller is the lead developer of Jabber, a project to create an open instant messaging and presence architecture.

Thank you for taking your time to answer our questions, and we wish you good luck with the Jabber project, and the best of holidays!

Question Answer
What motivated you to begin this project? It started as the typical "programmer's itch" -- having multiple friends on different IM services, and in general just seeing all the possibilities for extending an IM platform if it were open. Once I got started, I quickly realized the immense power of an open extensible real-time messaging network, and it grew quickly from there.
How did you come up with the name Jabber? The name actually came from Greg Nichols and Sean Heber, who were involved with the project initially. They are now working on the BeOS projects BeBits and Gimmick.
Jabber's grown from an instant messaging client/server project to an architecture for routing general XML data. Why broaden the project so? Actually, it started as an architecture for routing XML data instantly, with a primary application as a general IM client.
Why use XML as the protocol? Jabber is far more than a project for an instant messaging client/server, we're creating an architecture to move any data that can be expressed in XML instantly between two independent points. This is done with either simple one-to-one messages, or one-to-many presence. So "XML as the protocol" is not a choice we made, but the definition of what Jabber is underneath.
In which way is supporting the Jabber project? is supporting the project in various ways and firmly believe in supporting Jabber as an open platform. They hired me full-time to dedicate 100% of my efforts on the project, and have various other employees helping with other aspects of the project.
Does the Jabber project host a central Jabber server for use by default with the Jabber clients? No, Jabber is completely decentralized just as email is. Anyone can run a server and there are no central or default servers. Someone could customize a client and have it default to their server, such as ISPs, portals, or other service providers.
Do you see Jabber's instant messaging capabilities becoming as popular as the AOL instant messaging or Microsoft's instant messaging protocols? Or do you see them using Jabber someday? I think the demand is there for an open platform, and with the success of the IETF IMPP protocol (which we will be fully supporting when it's available) the Internet can hopefully move to a non-closed and non-AOL-controlled IM network. Many people don't realize the true extent of the loss of freedom on the Internet when one provider controls 99% of the "buddy list" market. We want to change that and give people their rights back.
Do you think Jabber will become a one-stop shop for instant messaging, including AIM, Yahoo, ICQ, MSN, and IRC capabilities? We are using the existing open-source libraries (where available) for connecting to those networks, and serializing the data on the fly to/from XML. We are only aiming to provide access to the basic functionality, messaging and presence, from within Jabber. We want to keep the clients lightweight and simple so they can operate anywhere (shell, GUI, web, Java, every platform).