IRC Chat has gotten a bad name over the years, I know this and I assume it is safer and more socially accepted now.
My honest goal EXCEEDS IRC chat - what I am hoping for is a VOICE and TEXT based CHAT PHP add-on that seemlessly opens a voice chat directly from here without downloading software, etc.
The shame of it is that Ventrilo is a great program overlooked by so many - it is less resource hungry than Teamspeak, a better rated program than Roger Wilco and for our purpose has served well - although we not (often) reach our 8 member capacity nightly, so someone may be in the lobby awaiting an "empty chair" in voice chat.
There are other options like AIM Messenger's chatroom where 30+ people can meet and talk, share collaborative WHITE-BOARDING and I think more people TRUST AIM then this Ventrilo we keep speaking of.
Is our simple text chatroom so bad that an IRC room has greater options and flexibility, what is the real reward to us for going with an IRC room.
It is the people who show up and chat that makes a chatroom - not the buttons and gadgets available. I see that Ventrilo in general is MUCH more successful than the Text room - which is applet launched.
I think to those of us who literallt SPEAK with each other, dozens of people who know the charactor and traits of other members which they have grown to know well. There is something far different from hearing and speaking LIVE compared to just text typing back and forth.
So, please keep your eyes open for a VOICE CHAT PROGRAM that works with this SMF forum. I dream of the day when all you need to do is click an online button and enter a voice room lobby where dozens of members around the clock await.
For those who haven't experienced Ventrilo Voice Chat yet, it isn't too late to see ow well VOICE OVER IP (same technology basically as Vontage, Comcast and Verison) to use your internet connection as a phone like service. Of course Ventrilo uses a commom IP address to connect us, not phone numbers - your privacy is as important there as it is ihere in the forum.http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php?topic=5880.0
for complete walkthrough to get on Ventrilo. The whole process shouldn't take more than 5 minutes.