Are there any IRC enthusiasts out here who would like to be involved in dragging the old beast to the 21st century?
The new incarnation of Kiwi IRC is starting to be pretty solid: https://kiwiirc.com/nextclient
The lead developer Darren aka prawnsalad could really use a hand with the interface presentation and layout.
I really believe with this modern web client approach we can get rid of the image of IRC as a clunky and opaque interaction tool. Having the power of server-side makes all sorts of magical things possible (storage, data processing etc.). The ideal would be to GUIfy everything, so the non-techy user will not have to face any frightening /commands. I guess the hardest will be inventing a GUI for even the ChanServ commands like setting various flags for channels.
Perhaps the first step would be conducting a competitive analysis of new and emerging chat platforms.
Listing open source ones:
Here is a quick route to Kiwi IRC’s channel using the WIP new client: https://kiwiirc.com/nextclient/#irc://irc.freenode.net/kiwiirc
There is a theme builder in development, but it only deals with CSS: https://kiwiirc.com/nextclient-themebuilder