Gaim, the open source, free, multi-platform, multi-protocol instant messaging client, is something I've tried a number of times in the past but was never happy with its buggieness as a substitute for MSN Messenger. That and not being able to dock it in the system tray like MSN Messenger.
Well fingers crossed this release of a program I haven't tried in quite some time, proves less buggy, and thanks to the impressive array of plug-ins Gaim readily comes with, I had it docking to the system tray with the tick of a box.
So why, personally, Gaim over MSN Messenger, a program that's served its purpose admirably for the last 2 years?
Whilst I use Microsoft Windows, which is anything but open source, this is because I want to easily play PC/Windows games, something I could do in my preferred operating system, Linux , with additional software, but it's easier this way.
That being said, just because you use Microsoft Windows, doesn't mean you can't still embrace the open source ideology. This I do by having the majority of applications on my computer be open source. That open source software is superior, and usually free, are two of the many perks.
Another advantage is that with MSN Messenger it would open Internet Explorer for my Hotmail account, the only time I'd ever use Internet Explorer. Now with Gaim it (shock horror) opens Hotmail in my default browser, Firefox.