Anyway, tack on ?mode=live to the end of your friends page....
There are two frames... a 100% frame showing your friends list and a 0% frame that reloads every 20 seconds... that frame hits friends?mode=livecond with a &lastitemid= parameter... it's very quick to find the last itemid of your latest friend's post, so I then compare it... if it's the same as last time, I just show a blank page and send the Refresh HTTP header again (oh, which I'd like to point out there is no spec for... IE and Mozilla both support two different ways of doing it, but not the same two ways!).
yeah ---- fun stuff.
not sure if I should release this to everybody or just paid users... it's still a little more resource intensive, ya know?
in IRC we were discussing making it free for free users, but with a 60 second delay instead of like 15 seconds.