When I mourned about the deficiencies of iChat (relative to GoogleTalk’s Jabber protocol), my wonderful readers recommended Adium X. I downnloaded the latest version and it started up smooth as silk.
I had to reset the alert sounds, but everything else works like a charm. I love tabbed chat windows, and the fact that the dock icon tells me whose message just arrived.
One remaining desideratum: a number of my contacts and I enjoyed seeing what’s playing on one another’s iTunes; is there a hack that enables that for Adium? (Not that it would have mattered for the last week or so, since I turn off iTunes when I’m playing Warcraft.)
(Micah recommended this solution.)