You’ve probably heard us talk about IRC, but wondered “what is that”? Today we’ll give you all the tools and confidence needed to join us and other Koha lovers in the conversation happening right now.
Internet Chat Relay (IRC) was one of the internet’s first forms of instant message. It facilitates communication between two users over a server. It might be the great-great-grandparent to more familiar services, like Facebook Messenger, SnapChat or Slack, but the principals are the same. And thanks to it being an open system you can download IRC clients to suit your operating system and aesthetic preferences. You can connect from anywhere on any device with an internet connection. Ready to start chatting with the ByWater team? Great, you can get rolling in just two easy steps!
Step One: How to get connected.
Check out this list of popular open source IRC clients over at Opensource.com. You can look in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store to find IRC clients for your devices as well.
Is it hard to pick just one? Head over to YouTube and search for reviews or Top Ten lists of IRC clients. There you can see the client being used by the reviewer. Once you install a chat client it is time to get connected.
Step Two: Where to connect to.
If you want to chat with the lovely team at ByWater (and we know you do) you’ll need to connect to the Server where our channel is hosted. There are many IRC servers, and on each server there are many channels. A channel is typically a name with no spaces prepended by a # sign. The server is analogous to a phone number’s area code; the port is the main seven digits; and the channel is the extension you want to reach.
The server we live on is irc.oftc.net and the port is 6667. Your specific IRC client will have Settings or Properties where you can input this information. There may also be a field where you can select your nickname. If you’re in doubt, check out the client’s Help section to guide you through.
Next, join the channels #bws-partners and #koha.
On #bws-partners (ByWater’s Partners) channel you can chat with the ByWater team, other partners, and create private messages to send between another person on the channel and yourself. On #koha you’ll be in the fast lane for all things related to Koha and its development. It is a really popular channel, but don’t be intimidated. We want you to contribute your thoughts and questions about Koha; that’s what makes this platform grow.
What if you cannot install an IRC client? (Maybe your IT administrator has placed restrictions on downloads.) You can still connect to the #koha and #bws-partners channels through your web browser. Go to: http://webchat.oftc.net/?channels=
Enter the nickname you want to use and the channel you want to connect to. In this example I connected to #bws-partners to chat with the user caboose.
Ready to learn more? The lovely people over at Opensource.com have an excellent IRC quickstart guide. There are a lot of useful tricks and tips to IRC.
We cannot wait to see you in the channel!