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Add New Buddies in iChat on Your MacBook

In iChat, a Buddy is anyone whom you want to chat with from your MacBook, whether the topic is work related or your personal life. iChat keeps track of your Buddies in the Buddy list. You can also add them to your Address Book or use the AIM entry in an Address Book contact to generate a new Buddy identity.

To add a new Buddy, follow these steps:

  1. Choose Buddies→Add Buddy, or click the Add Buddy button at the bottom of the iChat window and click Add Buddy from the pop-up menu, or press Command+Shift+A.

  2. To create a Buddy entry from an Address Book contact who has an Instant Messaging username, click the down-arrow button next to the Last Name box to display the Address Book list. Click the entry to select it.

    As a shortcut, you can also click in the First Name box and then type the person’s first name, or click in the Account Name box and type the person’s Instant Messaging account name.

  3. To add a brand-new person who’s not already in your Address Book, type the person’s Instant Messaging account name.

  4. Click Add to save the Buddy information.

Even when you add a new Buddy and that name appears in the Buddy list, don’t be surprised if the name actually fades out after a few seconds — that indicates that the person is offline and unavailable. You can also tell when a person is available if her name appears with a green bullet in the Buddy list.

You can also specify a number of actions that iChat should take if a Buddy logs in or out of Instant Messaging, or if a Buddy changes his or her status to Available. To display these actions, click the desired Buddy’s entry in your Buddy list and then press Command+Shift+I (from the menu, click Buddies→Show Info).

Click the Alerts button and then choose the event that should trigger the action from the Event pop-up menu. Select the desired check box to specify whether iChat should play the sound that you select, run an AppleScript, speak an announcement, or animate the iChat icon by “bouncing” it in the Dock.

Click the Address Card button on the Info dialog to enter or edit the person’s

  • Real name

  • Nickname

  • E-mail

  • Buddy icon

Click Show in Address Book, and iChat obligingly creates an entry in your Address Book for your new Buddy. (Apple, you truly rock.)

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