Hehe, then I'll try to avoid phrasing myself harshly as well=)
My point really was exactly that "user friendly" and "annoying" or "patronising", by abuse of the term, has come to mean the same thing to many people. I think your original post was too assuming about the original posters intensions when he used the word "user friendly". You just assumed he wanted to sugar-coat eveything and make them unusable to boot. This defensive position, while understandable, is unfortunate because it makes it too easy to dismiss potential changes towards real "user friendliness" (i.e. not unusability) as unworthy. It misses the fact that there are real usability issues with mIRC and that it could be improved.
The attitude demonstrated on this thread (don't remember by whom) that people who don't want to use /commands shouldn't be on IRC in the first place is ridiculous and elitistic. I, and many others, don't want IRC to be the "secret club and handshake" of the few initiated, of the few computer-savvy enough. I really couldn't care less if someone navigate IRC by /commands, popups, or cute little furry animals. If they are on there to chat, power to them. I really think it's equally ridiculous to suggest that a buttonbar on each channel window would ruin mIRC (especially as they would with 100% certainty be optional). The whole attitude that "it's good enough for me, by golly, it should be good enough for anyone" is treacherous and a certain way to get stuck in mediocricy.
mIRC, as the whole computer interface is _not_ user-friendly enough, we're _not_ at the end of the line. But making it more user-friendly is _not_ always about dumbing down the interface and making it less usable. That is, in fact, making it more user-atagonistic. Stop thinking about new features you would not use (and ignore other people when they think of them) and start thinking about new features you would like to use.
(oops, i failed, that shounded harsh, ohh well, please note that you didn't singlehandidly work up to that, you seem to be a generally nice person, think instead that this is one of the many minor points of irritation of someone who can't write short sentences (me)) =)