Yahoo! officially announced support for OpenID for all its users. OpenID is a decentralized single sign-on protocol already supported by an increasing number of web sites like LiveJournal, Zooomr and Blogger. Yahoo!’s OpenID service will be available in public beta on January 30th.
There have been rumors about AOL playing with XMPP. They’ve setup a test server at xmpp.oscar.aol.com that allows connections with most Jabber clients out there. You can try to log in to ICQ with the username firstname.lastname@example.org on server xmpp.oscar.aol.com on port 5222. TLS is required.
The server is a bit overloaded right now so you might encounter connection problemns. As far as I know there hasn’t been an official announcement for the new service from AOL.
It seems they do not (yet?) support server to server connections so you can’t add AOL contacts to your XMPP buddy list of another provider, but maybe they change this later on.
The increased awareness of big sites with regard to open standards looks really promising. Let’s see what 2008 will bring us.