Five Power Tools for Pidgin
Pidgin is a great GTK2-based instant messenger application that supports a bevy of protocols, including ICQ, Yahoo!, MSN, Jabber, and AIM. It's a terrific app in its own right, but when you add some of these power tools, Pidgin is even better.
pidgin-hotkeys - Use this plugin to assign global hotkeys to quickly perform regular tasks like fetching messages, toggling the buddy list, or opening the preferences pane. Also available in German and Swedish.
Fonomo - This tool works with Pidgin 2.4 on Linux and Pidgin 2.5.2 on Windows to provide support for video chat. Your contacts won't need to install any software to view your Webcam, they'll simply click the link you send to be connected.
Pidgin-Paranoia - Make sure all your messages are information-theoretically secure with this plugin for Pidgin. The project's Web site explains the details of this concept best: "Because the plugin uses a one-time pad where the secrect key has the same length as the message and the key is only used once, the encryption is information-theoretically secure. This means that from the encrypted messages the contents of the messages are not revealed. In short: If you use truely random numbers to generate the key files and if you keep them perfectly secret, one-time pads can not be broken." Cool, huh?
Twitter and Facebook plugins - libpurple-twitter-protocol treats Twitter as a complete IM protocol, and Facebook Chat for Pidgin connects Facebook's IM service with libpurple without the need for an API key. Both plugins let users receive messages from Twitter and Facebook right in Pidgin.
pidgin-festival - Here's a bonus plugin, without a screenshot for obvious reasons. This handy tool works with the text-to-voice app Festival. It synthesizes messages from Pidgin into spoken word that can be played through your computer's speakers.