I had first met Marty at a lift. After forcing myself on him (conversationally ofcourse), I had managed to get myself invited to weekly soccer matches (Luckily you can suck at soccer while still loving it!). At one of these matches he had told me that he was working-on/starting Tangler. At first I had assumed this was a flavour of chips for us geeks. So I had decided to go to tangler.com and was presented with an option to signup for beta-testing their new product. All I had known at this point was it was kind of a forum – “jees done before” I thought.
Soon after I had received my account from Mick. So I logged in for the first time. Big mistake. Let me say I am still paying for it. While forums themselves are not a new idea, Tangler’s approach to facilitating forums is in fact quite simple and yet very very addictive. They have used a pure web 2.0 approach to their app. No software installation is necessary, works on major browsers (so far I have only tried it on Firefox 1.5 and 2.0 on linux), and provides complete control to you. Also Within moments, I was part of about 15 groups (mostly invited to by Mick) and managed to create a couple myself. Ofcourse this is what contributed to one of the biggest mistakes of my life. With the ease of (instant) communication, lacking in many other forums, you are never out of communicado with your contacts. Eagerness of new technology will have to give way to rudeness and introverted behaviour if you would like to get any work done!
Tangler also has a standalone desktop client for windows and linux. However I have not got this to work in linux yet (complains about missing libfXfixes.so.3). I would have preferred a plugin to existing IMs like everybuddy and/or Trillian rather than YASIM (Yet Another Standalone IM).
One thing I had found (possibly) buggy was time-zone management. Even though my profile says I am from Australia, I found some of my posts to have the wrong date. May be I havent set it up correctly. Also being in beta, I cant expect color-scheme customizations which I think would be very useful.
But all in all a great approach to forums, and especially justifies the eccentricity of folks at Tangler. Hope to see lots more of it in the future from this bloody awesome team (For non-ausies: “bloody” can be negative – ie “what a bloody f@#%” or positive like “what a bloody ripper”… and this definitely is the latter).