AOL Instant Messenger

Contents of This Page

Skip past contents.

  1. Gearing Up to Use AOL Instant Messenger
  2. Signing In
  3. Messaging
  4. Special Braille Considerations
  5. Obtaining Help
  6. AIM Keystrokes

AOL™ Instant Messenger (AIM™) is a communication (or "chat") program. Unlike e-mail where you send mail and wait for a reply, AIM allows active correspondence between you and another person. Similar to a chat room in that you can talk to several people at once, AIM is less "free wheeling" and more exclusive as you decide who to invite into a discussion.

Note: AOL Instant Messenger for Pocket PC can be purchased at

With PAC Mate support, AOL Instant Messenger really comes alive as PAC Mate speaks the messages you send and receive. In addition, PAC Mate audibly indicates when someone is trying to contact you.

In short, this is a fun program and one that you and your friends should not be without!

Gearing Up to Use AOL Instant Messenger

Before you can use AIM for Pocket PC, there are a few things you have to do first.

  1. Using your regular computer, go to and register your screen name and password.
  2. On your PAC Mate establish an Internet connection.
  3. Go to the Start Menu and select AIM.
  4. Press F2, select File, and press DOT 8 on Sign On.
  5. Enter your screen name and corresponding password used in creating the account.

If you would like this program to start automatically when you connect to the Internet, press DOTS 4-5 CHORD and move to the Save Password check box and press the SPACEBAR to select it. Then, press DOTS 4-5 CHORD again and check the Auto-Login check box.

Signing In

When you are ready to sign in, press F2, select File and press DOT 8, select Sign On. When the AOL Instant Messenger dialog opens, select your screen name in the edit field. Then press DOTS 4-5 CHORD to move to the next edit field and type in your password. For convenience, use the SPACEBAR to select the "Save Password" checkbox. When you are done, press DOTS 4-5 CHORD to move to the Sign On button and press DOT 8.


Once you're signed in, AIM opens to a tree view where you navigate with the UP and DOWN ARROW Keys to view online and offline contacts.

Special Braille Considerations

The following information concerns the use of contracted (Grade 2) braille when messaging. It assumes that you have pressed S CHORD, G prior to starting a messaging session

  1. Begin an AIM conversation with another user. Type your message in contracted braille.
  2. Before you press DOT 8 to send the message, press T CHORD to translate it so that it will appear as normal text when received.
  3. Remember to press T CHORD again to reset braille translation. If you forget, your messages will be typed in computer braille.
    1. If you do move to the Message History window, this automatically resets the contracted braille translation and you do not have to manually do so.

Obtaining Help

For a complete list of AIM keystrokes, please refer to the chart of keystrokes below.

The online help that comes with AOL Instant Messenger is quite comprehensive and clearly explains the features of this program. To open AIM Help, press F4 and press H or select Help from the Start Menu.

AIM Keystrokes


Description Command
Return to Location Window M CHORD, L
Add Entry to Buddy List M CHORD, A
Edit Selected Buddy M CHORD, E
Delete Selected Buddy M CHORD, D
Add New Group M CHORD, G
Send Instant Message to Selected Buddy M CHORD, I
Get Information About Selected Buddy M CHORD, O
Send Instant Message M CHORD, S
Change Font and Size M CHORD, T
End Instant Message Session M CHORD, N