There are many ways to keep contact with the rest of the world.
By far the best way is to meet them in a bar, drinking a beer together. Unfortunately, this is not always a viable solution, so I also make use of electronics to keep contact.
Number two on my list is the good ol’ phone, which has the benefit of meta-communication (emotions, emphasis,…) over the other electronic methods.
Then I use of course the internet to communicate, I am using e-mail (more personal), Usenet newsgroups (good for technical problems) and this site.
However, it might take a while before I receive feedback to the things I express using these media. Then we have the two I’s: IRC and IM. The first I use when I have a technical problem that needs to be fixed urgently, the second for all personal communication for which using the telephone would be overkill.
Considering IM, at work I use Microsoft Messenger a lot. We have a lot of contacts abroad, and small companies are not able to hang on the phone to talk with the other side of the world for half the day.
Since we are basically a Microsoft shop, and most people have Messenger already installed on their machines, we are using this.
Personally, I am not a big fan of Messenger, mainly because you have no option of connecting without giving away your e-mail address. For business use this is no problem, but for my personal use, I prefer a solution that does not give away more than strictly necessary.
Until I moved to Spain I have been using ICQ at home, and today I started using it again to be able to solve some problems on the fimcap site.
So back to ICQ! I installed the Lite version at home, and everywhere else I can use the web version. For those people who also use ICQ: my number is 11807773. Everybody else can use my Messaging Center to send me a message when I’m on-line.