Apparatus is provided for establishing and maintaining communication among a community of interest, comprising a plurality of communication devices for voice communication between users of the community of interest, each of the communication devices including a display for indicating communication availability of the users, a plurality of device agents for controlling respective ones of the communication devices in establishing the voice communication and updating each the display. A plurality of user agents is provided for maintaining user preferences. The user preferences include a list of the users of the community of interest. A tuple space is provided for exchanging tuples and anti-tuples between the user agents to monitor the communication availability, in response to which respective ones of the device agents update each respective display. A transient voice store is provided for receiving and storing a voice message from a first one of the users to a second one of the users with whom the first user is desirous of communicating and who is indicated on the display of the first user as being available for communication, whereupon the display of the second user is updated to indicate receipt of the voice message, and for playing the voice message to the second user. A communication switch is provided for establishing two-way communication between the users, whereby in response to the second user listening to the voice message and provided that the first user is available for communication a voice path is created in the communication switch between the first user and the second user, and in the event the first user is no longer available for communication the second user stores a voice message for the first user via the transient message store.
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