|yvi (yvi) wrote in dw_dev_training,|
@ 2009-07-28 03:47 pm UTC
|Entry tags:||irc, tips|
Having used IRC for 9 years now (not consistently, but from time to time), I then decided to type at least a short introduction which i hope will be useful.
Finding a Client
IRC is used via a client. If you have ever used any instant messenger system, you have used a client - it's a program that can speak to the server, which then sends replies. IRC is very similar, only that it connects to a server, which has different channels (rooms, whatever you want to call them) in which everyone can talk to each other, not just two people (or invited people).
So you'll need a program for connecting to the Dreamwidth IRC server ( irc.dreamwidth.org ) This isn't as much rocket science as it sounds. I, for example, am a hardcore nerd that uses... the Firefox plug-in Chatzilla. It's as easy to install as any Firefox plug-in, you just need to search for it, click install and then restart the browser. That was it.
Another often used client is mirc. It works with Windows and can be downloaded here: http://www.mirc.com/get.html . I hear the installation is rather easy, but I don't have Windows and can't test.
Then there's mibbit, which is a web-application, as far as I can see. You can access it here: http://www.mibbit.com/
Once upon a time, I used Trillian, a multi-protocol messenger, for ICQ and my Yahoo chat thingy. Trillian also has an IRC protocol you can use. You can download Trillian here: http://www.ceruleanstudios.com/download
There's more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison
Connecting to the Dreamwidth IRC sever
(Please keep in mind I only use one of these - I haven't actually used mirc and Trillian in quite a while)
You might think that surely, connecting to an IRC server, something that has been around for 15 years or so now, is complicated?
If you installed Chatzilla, go to the Dreamwidth IRC Wiki: http://wiki.dwscoalition.org/notes/IRC
Yeah, that was it.
Unfortunately, I am not sure if that works using another program. However, many other clients have an easy set-up as well.
With mirc, there's a tutorial here: http://www.mahq.net/chat/connection.h
There is a tutorial for setting up IRC under Trillian here: http://suprbay.org/showthread.php?t=9
On http://www.mibbit.com/chat/ , you need to click on 'Server' to put in the irc.dreamwidth.org and then put in your desired nick and #dw. It should then connect.
Information on using OperaIRC can be found here: http://operawiki.info/OperaIRC
Now What? Using IRC
IRC can be a bit scary at first. But it isn't! Really.
What you're in now is the main Dreamwidth chatroom. Most things happen here, but beginning devs will also want to join #dw_kindergarten. How? Well, many of the programs you use will have some graphical form of this, but you can also just type
and hit Enter. More channels are listed on the wiki, for example #dw_support for Support-related stuff.
Other than that, IRC is rather straight-forward. You see all messages and can type as in any chat. Saying 'hello' when you come in is nice, but not required. Same with saying 'bye' when you leave.
Commands are prefaced with /. You don't need many to use IRC, though. The second command you might need is
will set your nickname to Yvi. Which you shouldn't, as it's mine :)
/me thinks IRC is nifty
will print out the line "Yvi thinks IRC is nifty" instead of "Yvi: thinks IRC is nifty".
You can also, instead of using the general chat, have one-on-one chats with people. In most clients, you will be able to start these by double-clicking on their nicks, but you can also do
/msg Yvi Hi, Yvi
with the correct nickname. Though you are always welcomed to say hi to me.
Feel free to skip this.
There are a few bots in the main channel which you might notice from time to time. They are mostly there to keep people up-to-date. From time to time, for example you will see something like this:
Bugsy New Dreamwidth Development bug 1506 filed by firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bugsy Bug http://bugs.dwscoalition.org/show_bug.c
That was me filing a new bug report. Bugsy sends a message to the channel everytime a new bug is filed or closed and when someone puts up a new attachment on Bugzilla. You can also use it to talk about bugs. So when I say:
Yvi This is a test bug #1
Bugsy replies with:
Bugsy Bug http://bugs.dwscoalition.org/show_bug.c
So everyone know what I am talking about and has a link to the bug.
Figment, also known as Bit, is used from time to time for Support related stuff, but also for amusement. You might see hEll being used for amusement and nagios tells mark when something is wrong.
IRC might look scary at first because it's an old technology usually associated with hardcore-geeks, but it's actually a really nice place to be. You don't need to be there 8 hours a day, or even 1 or 2. Just install it, connect, and drop by from time to time, when you're bored, whenever you have a question, etc. Don't be scared to just say "hey, anyone around to help?". I do that all the time.
We don't bite. And usually, there's more than one person around.
I typed this up without a lot of planning, so tell me if any of this needs to be changed. I hope it'll help someone and please, if you have any questions, just ask them.