Jabber is an open instant-messaging network. The network is made up of many servers relaying chat messages on behalf of talkative users. Prosody can be installed on your server to let you take part in this network. Simple
You can set up your own Jabber service on your server (dedicated, VPS, etc.) or just on a box on your local network, to serve your home or office. Either way you can use it to converse with anyone else on the Jabber network, including people using Google Talk, probably the largest Jabber service on the network.
Prosody is such server software, available for Windows, Linux, or OSX. It will allow you to connect using one of the many available Jabber clients, and begin chatting with your Jabber-enabled friends.
We do have quite quite a few choices of server software, yes, but not so many as you might think. Many are not actively developed. There are roughly 3 servers actually considered for use by most people, and each of these has shortcomings. We believe there is room for improvement, and some innovation along the way. Prosody has more in its sights than just being another plain Jabber server.
Ahem, yes, that's Lua. If you have heard of Lua, you likely know it is used frequently in games, as an embedded scripting language. The reason Lua has been so popular in this area is due to its size, speed, and simplicity. Obviously games need to have high performance. Well so do servers.
Of course one could argue that performance would have been even greater if we had written Prosody entirely in C. This is most probably true, however the project would probably still be fairly incomplete right now, had we done this Sticking for the most part to Lua keeps things simple, and development fast.
Well, Prosody aims to be simple. Really simple. Whether you are setting up your first Jabber server, or whether you are looking to write server-side code that speaks the Jabber/XMPP protocol, we want to make it easy for you.
Apart from these goals, we also strive to keep lightweight, implementing much functionality in optional modules, which may be disabled if not needed.
Join our chatroom and mailing list. Say hi! There is plenty of work to go around. Not only do we need developers, but also packagers, documentation editors, and most important of all, testers!
So whether you're interested in picking up tools for development, or helping us in some other way, do ask. We don't bite
Do feel free to contact us if you have any questions you need answered.