At a recent meeting of the Hypergrid Adventurers Club we visited The Grey In Between, a beautiful standalone grid created by Vanish Seriath. During our meeting, Vanish mentioned how it might be helpful for us to use IRC as an additional way to chat in realtime as a group.
Read on to learn more about IRC and how to use it to stay in touch during our adventures.
Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a form of real-time Internet text messaging. It’s mainly used for group discussions in chat forums called “channels.”
IRC is pretty simple to use, and you don’t need to create an account to use it. You just choose an IRC server, sign in with a nickname, and select the channel where you want chat.
There are many different clients you can use to access IRC, but you can also access it via a web page without having to install anything.
Why use IRC? We can already communicate using the #HGAC Twitter hashtag, and we use inworld chat during our meetings.
Our #HGAC Twitter hashtag is a great way for us to share information with each other and the entire world, and it’s the best way for us to announce upcoming meetings or share information of interest to other HGAC members. And during our meetings we use inworld chat for group discussions.
But sometimes people may get lost or have technical difficulty logging in during one of our tours on the Hypergrid. IRC’s realtime chat gives us an external lifeline to help folks who need assistance. It can also be just another fun way for us to all stay in touch during the day.
How do I access the Hypergrid Adventurers Club’s IRC channel?
Thanks to Vanish, we now have a channel named #hgac on an IRC server called freenode.
Here’s how to easily access it via any web browser.
1) Load the freenode webchat page.
2) Enter a nickname that you’d like to use, and enter #hgac as the IRC channel you want to access. You’ll also have to enter a CAPTCHA phrase.
Here’s a pic of me logging in.
That’s it! You’ll be logged in to freenode and will immediately be in the #hgac IRC channel.
The nicknames of everyone in the channel are listed in the right column. I’m the only person in the channel in this example. As people type messages, you’ll see them appear immediately in the main window.
There are other channels on freenode that you may be interested in checking out, such as #opensim, #hypergrid and #opensim-dev. Those channels are always pretty active with many people discussing Opensim-related topics.
If you like, you can access to multiple channels at the same time. To do that, just enter all the channels you want to join in the “Channels:” field when you log in. Be sure to separate the different channel names with a comma and no spaces like this “#hgac,#opensim,#hypergrid”. You’ll then see all the different channels you are currently in as white buttons with their names at the top of the screen. Click on the buttons to jump between the different channels.
That’s about it! I’ll be monitoring our new IRC channel during all of our Hypergrid Adventurers Club meetings from now on, and will check in on it now and then during my workdays. Hope to see you there.
-John “Pathfinder” Lester
Wow! This is very gooood !!! Thank you for sharing that, Vanish !
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… mIRC has been around for some time. What… the early 90’s? I used it then.
It seems like a dramatic technological step backward. What about a program such as TeamSpeak?
At least it would be live voice chat.
TeamSpeak would be cool, but it costs $ to run a TeamSpeak server. Maybe if someone is willing to let us use their server we could check it out?
And yes, IRC is pretty old. But I do like it because it’s a simple way for folks to use group chat without having to register for yet another service. And you can use a web-client so you don’t have to install any new software, too.
Hi, thanks for posting that Pathfinder.
Yes, IRC is pretty old. So is TCP/IP. Or html. Personally, I don’t bother how old a technology is, as long as it works sufficiently for the things you need it for. And IRC is easy to access, reliable, and free, and even works from within some viewers.
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