did the entering your name bit work on the website? the chat *is* just a java applet, so if you have java installed and working i have no idea why it's doing that. you can alternatively use xchat (an IRC program) to get on laserchat - for the mac version, go to http://sourceforge.net/projects/xchataqua/ and click the big green download button, then install it. i'll repeat the instructions for after you've installed from page 2 of this thread:
run xchat, a network list will appear. enter your nick name (user name you want to use for chat), and maybe a second choice in case your main nick name is already taken.
click the "Add" button on the right of the list, type in ECnet and press return, this will create a new entry at the top of the list.
click "Edit..." (below add), then click "Edit" on the new window that appears and type pseudo-servers.irc.ecnet.org and press return. to make it easier for yourself, type #laserchat in "Channels to join:". you can also later come back here and enter your nickserv password, if you register your nick.
once that's all done, click "Close" at the bottom of the "Edit ECnet" window, your settings will be saved. from now on, all you have to do is click on ECnet in the list, click Connect at the bottom right, and you will automatically join #laserchat
(for those who've noticed i'm now recommending pseudo-servers.irc.ecnet.org instead of just irc.ecnet.org, it's because a few people have been having issues with irc.ecnet.org. DNS for it is currently being modified, so it's funny for some people, but the pseudo-servers address should work fine.)
a windows program cannot inherently run on a mac, at least when inside a mac's normal operating system (OS X). there are programs that are available for both windows and macs, but they're different versions, and not every windows program has a mac version. you can use a program called wine to run windows programs on a newer (intel) mac, though it doesn't run all windows programs, and those it does are often run buggily. you can also run windows on a newer mac, either by itself, or (slowly) in a window on the mac desktop. but no, a windows-only program will not just simply run on a mac, it takes a lot of screwing around, or installing windows, and it's not even vaguely possible to do on an older, non-intel, powerpc (G3/G4/G5 etc) mac.
i have vista, its actually a wonderful operating system. i have never had problems with support EVER and the customer support from microsoft is solid. the look itself i must say is better then a mac too! aeroglass really reinvented the way this computer looks
you're lucky - many have been having problems with vista. becky had a vista computer for about 3 or 4 days before it frustrated her too much n she took it back, partly because it couldn't reliably do what it was meant to do (a media machine that hooks up to the TV).
isn't bad i prefer my linux desktop of course...hehe...you can see a couple pics in the "post your desktop" thread in the "other" section oh and just to mention - www.laserchat.org is now working! my host had had some DNS issues but basically redid everything from scratch a few days ago.