The windows version of Yahoo! Messenger has the ability to use Yahoo-developed plug-ins known as IMVironments (or IMVs for short). It's been there a while (a year or two now), but I've never really cared because (1) I don't use Windows much and they only work on Windows, plus (2) most of them seemed to either aimed at media brainwashed teens (the Lizzie McGuire one is a good example of this), were outright advertisements (Purina Dogs, Friskies, T-Mobile, Panasonic), or comics (Dilbert, Garfield).

But recently a useful one was added to the mix: The Yahoo! Search IMV. It basically integrates Yahoo! Search with instant messaging so that you can search with other people in a collaborative and real-time fashion. It's one of those things that seems obvious the first time you see it. Now I wonder why everyone hasn't done it.

So if you end up in IM conversations that often generate the need to search for something on-line (I always seem to), this could be quite useful. And if you're not a Windows user, well, pester to folks at Yahoo! to add IMV support to the Mac and Unix clients.

Hey, JR even likes it.

Posted by jzawodn at October 02, 2003 05:13 PM

Reader Comments
# Martin said:

Thanks for the info on Yahoo! Search IMV!!

on October 2, 2003 05:50 PM
# Mike Jones said:

MSN Messenger has had built in interactive search for over year in the form of a plug-in from 'ActiveBuddy Inc'. It searches via the BBCi search which is quite good.

on October 3, 2003 12:03 AM
# brandt said:

what, you don't like the Hello Kitty IMVironment?

on October 3, 2003 08:30 AM
# Nicholas Romero said:


on October 3, 2003 01:23 PM
# Ask Bjørn Hansen said:

Are there any public APIs? I can think of a place that might be interested in playing with that. :-)

on October 3, 2003 04:42 PM
# Chris said:

There is another underground useful IMVironment... CodeTalker - which lets engineers/web desingers (well, engineers who code in Windows) send code to each other. It displays line numbers, enables both users to highlight lines of code, and it doesn't do any auto-formatting: html, smiley, urls. More info about CodeTalker

on November 13, 2003 08:53 AM
# Abby said:

The new Yahoo Messenger 6 totally rocks, with cool skins and Yahoo Avatars and much more new shit

on September 26, 2004 09:45 PM
# FabledBeowulf said:

Easier way to search with Yahoo messenger, just type "s: (whatever you want to search for here)"

on March 16, 2006 11:56 AM
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone. My current, past, or previous employers are not responsible for what I write here, the comments left by others, or the photos I may share. If you have questions, please contact me. Also, I am not a journalist or reporter. Don't "pitch" me.


Privacy: I do not share or publish the email addresses or IP addresses of anyone posting a comment here without consent. However, I do reserve the right to remove comments that are spammy, off-topic, or otherwise unsuitable based on my comment policy. In a few cases, I may leave spammy comments but remove any URLs they contain.