I've been playing with it for a short while. The project appears to be dead, sorta. However, it's all decentralized, so as long as someone's running a peer out there, and people can connect to it, the "circle" is up and running.
It has instant messaging and "gossip" (a rudimentary message-board type thing). File-sharing, too, but I don't care about that.
On unixy/mac systems, do
env CVS_RSH=ssh cvs -z3 -d:ext:email@example.com:/cvsroot/circle co circle
On Windows, install
- Python: http://python.org/download/
- PyGTK: http://www.pcpm.ucl.ac.be/~gustin/win32_ports/binaries/pygtk-2.6.3-1.win32-py2.4.exe
- GTK: http://gladewin32.sourceforge.net/modules.php?name=Downloads&d_op=getit&lid=84
Grab http://thecircle.org.au/Circle-0.41c.pyw, and double-click on it.
It uses UDP port 29610, so you'll need to forward that port or something if you're behind a firewall.
I've set up a peer at circle.b.org.pk:29610, in case someone wants to try it out. I just have one other node connected to it right now (from my desktop at work); both nodes should be reliably accessible. Right now, two other people are also on the circle as well.
If your node is on the "circle" for long enough (an hour), your node enables its dht, and shares lookup data with the rest of the network. If you sign off, it'll offload your lookup data with the other nodes.