From the blog post entitled Spaces and Messenger integration added on the Windows Live Mail team's blog, Steve Kafka lets us know

I just blogged about this on my own Space and someone asked why it wasn't mentioned here on the team blog. Because I forgot, that's why.
We just added the "contact control" to contacts in Windows Live Mail. If you frequent Spaces, this will be familiar to you. For contacts that are Messenger enabled this lets you see their profile picture, Messenger presence, gleams (the "something is new" indicator), their contact card and more. Check out my original post for a screen shot. To see it for yourself, go to your contacts and click on some of your friends from Messenger.
We're definitely working on more integration between Messenger, Spaces and Mail, so consider this just the beginning.

The contact information which is used for the contact control is another one of those core services our team provides as platform piece for other Windows Live user experiences like Spaces, Messenger and Mail. Eventually I'd love to see the contact control integrated across all Windows Live experiences where users have to be identified. It's much better than just a username, dont you think? In the meantime you can check out my screenshot of the new integration in action.


Monday, April 10, 2006 7:46:51 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
So a person who has a spaces account, I saw their picture (same picture that is one their spaces account) but for someone else who has a Live Messenger account, their picture on their contact card didn't show up. Are these two different contact cards?
Monday, April 10, 2006 5:36:20 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
The picture you see in Messenger for your Messenger contacts is not stored on our servers but instead is fetched from your friend's PC. The picture associated with a profile on a Space on the other hand is stored on our servers.

This does lead to an inconsistent experience when the contact card is viewed outside Messenger and is a problem we are aware of.

PS: Thanks for using our services.
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