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Emoticons #218154 04/02/10 02:55 PM
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Cristian_Xtris Offline OP
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Will there ever be emoticons in mIRC?
mIRC is kind of outdated when it comes to design. What I mean is in a world with a strong visual environment, we still use text-based emoticons on mIRC and this, in my opinion, makes people choose other programs for IRC, or use IM instead of IRC.
From what I have seen, as a simple user, people would be much more enthusiastic if there were a beautiful environment with nice ways to express themselves, like emoticons.
mIRC has sounds, and can have a very nice graphic with a little tweaking, as client desires, but I use it for 10 years, and see no emoticons while some other programs for IRC, like Trillian and java web-browser clients, offer it.
Thank you for understanding.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218155 04/02/10 03:16 PM
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Riamus2 Offline
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Maybe, maybe not. It's been brought up many times and there are a lot of people on both sides of that fence and no official word.

Now, to improve on your 'facts'... mIRC is still the most popular IRC client for Windows users regardless of not having emoticons, so people aren't choosing other clients just to have emoticons. Also, IM and IRC are really two different things and should not be compared in such ways. They have different uses and abilities and protocols and so on. Just because they are both used to chat doesn't make them the same. It's like comparing apples and oranges... even though they are a similar shape and size, they aren't the same thing.

I think you'll find the majority of IRC users really could care less about emoticons. Most wouldn't care if they were added, but at the same time, most wouldn't care if they weren't. Most of the people requesting them are those who basically grew up on AIM rather than IRC and therefore expect IRC to change to be like AIM. That just isn't going to happen. Minor things like emoticons can be added, but IRC will never be IM.

Besides, with unicode coming, you have access to the unicode smileys that you can use if you really want and if you don't want to "type" those smileys, it's easy enough to use a script to replace ascii smileys with unicode smileys.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218170 04/02/10 04:54 PM
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Emoticon Discussions

I see no benefit to graphical emoticons. Should it also have some graphic for brb, afk, and all the other lingo? They may even end up causing problems. To be honest I even have colors stripped for incoming messages since all the nuclear fruit cocktail like tags and such just annoy me. A significant number of irc users write code daily and process text based chat easily without bells, whistles and gongs. d:-|

Re: Emoticons [Re: gooshie] #218180 04/02/10 05:52 PM
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Cristian_Xtris Offline OP
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To Riamus2...
You are right, people are not choosing for emoticons, because options are not that great, and the most popular software in IRC is mIRC (as you said).
I do not compare IM with IRC. I know what is behind these, I do have an idea about coding. I try to compare the chat environment these offer (as in more technical terms, resources of the client itself interacting with the user). So, what I mean, is that a simple user, wanting to join some IRC network (any network) for the first time, most likely he/she will download mIRC (if uses Windows). Then in his/her head will tend to compare it with IM, just because it is related to chat, and has nothing to do with the coding behind them because he/she does not care.
When you go to a fast-food, and get a burger, you are interested in that burger, you do not want to know how exactly it's made and how a cow dies for it, you want to enjoy your burger.
It's the same here too, people do not care about servers, coding, scripting, etc. they just enjoy the chat.
For those kind of people I suggest emoticons just because it's more fun.

For gooshie...
I am not speaking for those experienced users. I speak for myself and probably for some inexperienced users. In the end they have to compare, as people tend to compare things in their life. And when that comes up, these users do not care about the power and coding of the piece of software, but by graphics, and how much they enjoy using that piece of software.
I tested myself and compared mIRC with other software. It just felt great to have emoticons and feel like your conversation spices up with colors and nice images. Yes, you are very right, mIRC is a very powerful tool on coding, scripting, security, etc., but all these are for pros, we tend to forget that in the end everyone of us is not buying always a new cookie by the taste of it, but because we see it so nicely wrapped up. Images do count a lot... you get my point.

Last edited by Cristian_Xtris; 04/02/10 06:05 PM.

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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218184 04/02/10 06:04 PM
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And there you have explained one of the major differences between use of IRC and use of IM. IM is specifically designed to let everyone chat even if they have no computer skills whatsoever. IRC is a more "skilled" level of chat, though over the years it has grown to where many with little computer skill are also using it and that's where you get all of the newer IRC clients that offer these IM style formats... trying to offer that stuff to the users who care more about looks than content. mIRC has always tended to stay more toward the original IRC style (with the addition of scripting of course).

Will mIRC ever try to be more like IM? Perhaps. Though I would be willing to bet that it won't happen anytime soon. Emoticons and other IM types of things have been requested for years and no official comment has been made and those features haven't been added. I'd be willing to be that even if they are on the list of things to someday add, that they are near the bottom. Of course, I'm not Khaled and that's just speculation. smile

Keep in mind that you can script/program emoticons and other types of graphics displays if you really want to get into it. It's not something quick and easy and takes a lot of knowledge of programming as well as scripting (using DLLs), but it can be done for those that really want it. Of course, the ones who really want it are usually the ones who aren't as computer savvy, so....

Anyhow, like I said, the answer to your question is "Maybe. Maybe not." and that there isn't any official word. No matter where else the discussion goes, that's the only possible answer unless Khaled says something himself.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Riamus2] #218197 04/02/10 10:46 PM
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argv0 Offline
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Quote:
IRC is a more "skilled" level of chat


This is misleading. You don't need any "skills" to use IRC casually.

The *real* difference between "IM" and IRC is that IM, in general, has little support for group conversations. If they do, they tend to lack the most basic support for channel/room administration that makes it feasible to control large groups of people. IM is designed for 1-to-1 conversation. IRC is designed for a 1-to-many conversation. This makes IRC superior for one form of conversation and IM superior for another. The technical knowledge common among IRC users is more likely a side effect of the open (source) implementations of clients/servers, scriptability of clients/servers, as well as a number of other issues (distributed vs. centralized, free vs. ad supported)-- it is not the other way around. There are many non-technical users on IRC, some without even knowing it (through gateways like www.webmaster.com and other Java/JS based chat applets). You're confusing correlation and causation here. Skilled users gravitate towards IRC, but IRC in itself requires little skill, certainly with the clients available today.

Emoticons are rather irrelevant to both from a protocol design perspective, which is why you can have clients that support emoticons and those that don't. mIRC could theoretically support emoticons, if Khaled had the time and enough will from the userbase to make it happen.

But let's get technical: mIRC has a very specific implementation that makes it relatively difficult to implement emoticons without changing a lot of core features in the client. This is likely the most important reason it won't happen any time soon. There are existing scripts/dlls which make use of neat hacks to get this working on the client side (converting smile to a smiley, for instance). So in essence, the functionality already exists, though it is not in mIRC's core code.

As mentioned, there are clients that support emoticons. None of them have been game changers. None of them have inspired people to IRC. So really, the data on how much emoticon support impacts your client is already out there. You can do a more empirical study if you'd like, but from my anecdotal experience it really has no impact on IRC usage or adoption at all. It's simply a gimmick that existing IRC users shrug off and new IRC users might find "cute". I mean, even users of MSN or AIM don't use IM because they can have emoticons. They don't even choose between competing IM protocols based on emoticon support. They use IM because the form of communication serves their needs and a less rational regional critical mass effect. By the same token, a user will not choose IM over IRC because one has a better looking smiley face, they'll choose IM over IRC because their friends IM but don't IRC. It's pretty much as simple as that.

Finally, to call mIRC outdated because it's "text-based" is a little ironic. The whole point of IRC is that it's text-based. I always find this argument for emoticons a little funny. Firstly because it assumes text-based communication is "outdated" (texting is outdated now? the barely 3 year old twitter is outdated? news to me), secondly because you fail to see that mIRC is not the reason it's text based-- the IRC protocol is. Again, you could convert smilies into cute little pictures, but that really doesn't change the core concept of IRC being a text-based chat protocol.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218216 05/02/10 02:49 PM
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IM is like text messaging on your cell phone whereas IRC is like multiuser notepad.

Re: Emoticons [Re: argv0] #218267 07/02/10 01:11 PM
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Cristian_Xtris Offline OP
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To argv0
I respect your point of view and your arguments but please read more carefully before quoting me. I did not call mIRC outdated because it is text-based, I only said "outdated when it comes to design" because "we still use text-based emoticons". Therefore... I refer to emoticons as text-based, and not the way of chat and protocol as text-based, that is why mIRC (in my opinion) is outdated.
Thank you for understanding.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218291 08/02/10 08:58 AM
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personally, the first thing I turn off when installing an IM client is graphical emoticons (and I hate the new versions of ICQ where this is not even possible >_<).

but I do see an increasing demand from the userbase asking for emoticons, mostly because they are used to it from IM clients.

as long as it's an option that is easily turned off, I'm fine with it getting implemented. for me though, it wouldn't have high priority (because I will turn it off as soon as it does anyways ;-])


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218300 08/02/10 04:19 PM
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Keep in mind that adding emoticons is not some simple thing to do. Currently, graphics display within a line of text is not possible. You can't just $replace() a character with a picture. To add them would require a lot of work redoing the entire chat window. I'm sure there are features that are on the to-do list that are actually useful rather than just making it look "pretty". And I'm sure there are features that have a bigger impact for people for the amount of work than the minor impact of emoticons for a large amount of work.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Riamus2] #218312 09/02/10 12:47 AM
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since DLL's can already do it for quite some time already, the only hard part would be to copy the same system into something native to mIRC? than again, I have no clue how the DLL's do it and how stable their method is ;-]


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Doqnach] #218319 09/02/10 02:12 AM
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Well, using a DLL isn't the same as integrating it right into the program. You can't just copy/paste the code from the DLL into mIRC. It takes a lot more work than that.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Cristian_Xtris] #218394 12/02/10 03:29 PM
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I am not sure if I have ever commented on the emoticon issue in the past, so I will just quickly chip in: I am not a great fan of graphical emoticons myself :-) however many people obviously enjoy using them. Emoticons have not been added to mIRC mainly because there are so many feature requests on my to-do list ahead of them. I am not sure how much work it would take to add them since I have not looked into it yet but once the Unicode version of mIRC is released (a huge and complex project that I have been working on over the last year), I plan on implementing changes to the interface - and support for graphical emoticons will be a part of that. And yes, they will be optional :-)

Re: Emoticons [Re: Khaled] #218395 12/02/10 03:57 PM
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I hope they will be customizable too!


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Re: Emoticons [Re: Khaled] #218411 13/02/10 12:44 AM
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My dream would be that you made mIRC for linux.
I could care less about graphical emoticons.
Btw, thanks for such a great client. d:-)

Re: Emoticons [Re: gooshie] #218417 13/02/10 12:26 PM
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Actaully... mIRC runs fine (with wine) under Linux. I've used it may times this way.

Re: Emoticons [Re: Emberato] #218418 13/02/10 12:30 PM
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I keep reading it's sluggish and buggy. I read trying to use the script editor it crashes and other things. What distro and wine version you use?

Re: Emoticons [Re: gooshie] #218427 13/02/10 04:06 PM
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Always ran fine on Redhat here.


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Re: Emoticons [Re: gooshie] #218435 13/02/10 09:16 PM
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I have no problems running mIRC using Xandros.

Re: Emoticons [Re: Khaled] #218458 14/02/10 07:20 PM
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See everybody? THIS is why mIRC is THE BEST IRC client I've ever heard of or used for windows - because the developer listens to what its user base wants, adds in features we request, and if it can't be implemented, gives us REAL reasons why they're not. I got a lot of respect for somebody who does that. khaled, while I RARELY use mirc anymore, please keep up the great job!

For those who think Im brown-nosing it, you're wrong, I just like seeing a good product stay strong and developed. I'm sure K likes hearing he's doing a good job and the support he gets from us


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