Many consider IRC as the predecessor of the modern chat software, and they are partially correct in their line of thought. The original IRC that came out in 1988 is not only the predecessor but the active component of new IRC channels. The simplicity of the software made it possible to upgrade the initial design as new technologies surface. This means that the original code is still inside the IRC and the improvements didn’t disrupt the standard operations of the IRC.
Early years of the Internet Relay Chat
We already mentioned that first iteration of the IRC came to light in 1988 where it replaced MUT. This software wasn’t a direct product of development but a product that came as a result of a try to improve (extent) the existing BBS software. The team that worked on the project decided to implement the single-line chat, and that was the beginning of the IRC. The software runs on a single server, but a bit later the team started another server, and that came to be known as the IRC network.
The disagreement wave that plagued the IRC world began in 1990, and it led to the creation of EFnet. It all started with A-net, which was an open server where anyone can enter and link their channels. It was anarchy as the name suggests. The EFnet was created by people who desired a bit of order in the chaos. They gathered several enthusiasts and created their own q-lines IRC with non-eris servers.
The rise of the Undernet
The effort to create an orderly network of channels wasn’t a successful venture as many of the servers suffered constant takeovers and other issues. This changed in 1992 when “Wildthang” gathered a group of people with a goal to create a test IRC that would address existing issues on the EFnet. This turned into “The Undernet” which consisted of dozens of servers connected from all around the world. Trustworthy people maintained servers, and the protection levels for users and channels went up. This network had 57 connected servers at its peak in 1993.