Kool IM launches (in alpha version) – AJAX Web IM Interface.

Can’t download a dedicated IM client such as MSN Messenger, Yahoo IM, or AOL IM and use it from your computer because of your employer or school firewall or policy?

Don’t want to install bloated IM clients?

Kool IM launched the Alpha version of their Web interface to all the major IM services, including MSN, Yahoo, AIM, Google Talk, ICQ and Jabber!

I’ve tested it with Firefox 1.5.0.4, FF 2.0 Beta 1, FF 3.0 (alpha) and IE 7.0 beta 3… works well. Clean interface. Obviously the AJAX interface doesn’t offer all the features of a dedicated client (such as Windows Live Messenger or Yahoo Chat) but it does offer the basics – which is what the vast majority of chatters need and use. Change your status, chat…

The feature set is very similar to Meebo, but Kool IM for now works using a pop-up borderless browser session. Remember to allow popups from *.koolim.com in your browser otherwise it obviously won’t work.

They’re based in Michigan, about 200 yards from the Ford factory… and one of the company principals, Samer, is very proactive on the Kool IM blog and forums and even on the bigger blogs such as Techcrunch… responding to blogger comments and more.

I’m getting a good vibe from this start-up…

One note which I will post on their forum – the login to the various IM/chat systems from their home page is on a non-secure page. This really should be SSL encrypted… and of course, we’re sending our credentials (login and password) to a third party who we don’t really know… yet!

Stay tuned.