Posted by Daniel

Since some very smart people invented this thing called "The Internet" pretty much every information we care about is available in a few seconds. Everybody thinks that it makes our life easier. I kind of agree and in the same time disagree, I think it actually raised the standard of how informed we should be. There are lots of things happening around us that affect our busy life. And we need to know if these things are happening right now. Why? Because it’s possible. Is my favorite stock going up or down? Is there a traffic jam? Did I get that mail from my boss? How’s the weather forecast? Did someone respond to my garage sale ad? What happens in the world? How’s Seahawks doing? And in the same time we have to work for a living and to spend time with our family. Who has the time to check 20 web sites every hour? Definitely not me and I’m sure most of you feel the same.

But not everything is lost. Windows Live Messenger and Alerts are here to help. Most of us keep Messenger running 24/7 and it can do most of this work for you. Okay, it will not make coffee or replace you at work but it will keep an eye on "The Internet" and it will let you know when something interesting to you happens by popping a toast.

You might have noticed the Alerts tab in Messenger. It’s the one with the yellow bell. Here is the place where you will see a history of alerts. It is useful when you take a break from your computer and you might have missed some toasts.

How do we control what kind of alerts we get? On the rigth top corner there is a link "Go to site". Click on it and your browser will navigate to http://alerts.live.com where you can select the alert types, the delivery methods and a lot more options. You can even tell it to send the alerts to your phone when you are not signed into Messenger. Isn’t that great?

Here are a few types of alerts you can get:

  • Inside Windows Live Messenger blog updates – that’s right, you will know when we have a new post on this blog
  • Breaking news and headlines from MSNBC News
  • Sports scores and updates from Fox Sports
  • MSN Video Alerts
  • Stock alerts from MSN Money
  • Real-time local traffic incidents from MSN Carpoint
  • Local weather forecasts
  • AMBER alerts – important messages about abducted children in your area
  • New job opportunities that match your skills – from careerbuilder.com
  • When someone responds to your Expo Live ad
  • and more … – check http://alerts.live.com for the full list

If you have a comment/question/concern/discussion topic/rant/rave/other – please head over to the Windows Live Messenger Newsgroup.