X Windows IRC Hack

xIRCh v0.11

(pronounced "zirch")

Old Screenshot (v0.1)

New Screenshot (v0.11)

Get version 0.11 here: xirch.tar.gz

FYI, most of the following information was written almost 3 years ago. Please don't flame me for any comments or references that you dissagree with, as they were probably valid when I wrote the text. It is intended purely for reference purposes.

What is xIRCh?
xIRCh is an IRC client that I am developing. I intend it to be fully functional someday, and maybe on the same level as a windows program known as mIRC. However, it is being written for the X Windows enviroment.

Why am I making it?
Yes, there are other X Windows IRC clients out there. So why make another one? The answer is very simple. All the other ones are junk. Through my intensive search for a good X Windows IRC client, I came across one programs that worked well, called Zircon. This program was the best IRC client available for X Windows, but I disliked many things about it. It severely lacked many features. For one, it did not support the standard ircII commands that all IRC users find so useful for quick and dirty stuff. Then I also noticed that it completly lacked the simple ability to display @'s and +'s before appropriate nicks in channels. It also lacked many of the foramtting codes (color, etc.) that were supported in Windows clients like mIRC and PIRCH. Most of all, it had no interface for simple scripting or any advanced features. So after much frustration, I choose to make my own IRC client, starting with little knowledge about IRC client-server communication, except the RFC document and some help files on UNIX socket programming.

What am I making it with?
I am writing this program entirely in the C++ programming language, utilizing an extremely good X Windows C++ programming library, known as the Qt toolkit. This library is soo good, that most development time is spent on writing the program, and working on it, rather than getting it to compile or preventing it from crashing all the time. If you ever consider X Windows development, I recommend that you try it. It is also well documented, so learning it is a breeze.

When can I get it?
I do not know whether I will wait until version 1.0 to distribute the program, or if I may distribute it as soon as I have a resonably functional pre-release version. I plan to wait until development proceeds as much as possible, to prevent people from forming permanent opinions of a program before it is impressive. Basicly, I don't want people hating it as a pre-release, and then continuing to dislike it after it is a very good and capable program, because of a bad experience with a pre-release. If I do release it once it is resonably capable, then I may only dirtribute it as a binary compiled for the Linux system, so I don't have to worry about preparing the source code with all the extra GNU license stuff that is needed for the full release. The full release will most likely contain full sources so it can be compiled on any UNIX system that supports the Qt toolkit.


Questions? Comments? Useful information?
E-Mail me at konigd@rpi.edu