Wow ! That's real user service ;)
But on the other side, I have to admit, maybe it would be better to go away from the "specialized client" thing and have an irc <=> perlmonks gateway that echos the stuff both ways (it could also announce new nodes as soon as they become available). But that would obvioulsy leave the chatterbox open for attacks by non-registered users.
The other alternative would be a private irc server operated on perlmonks.org with user authentification through the database - also not really a viable option ...
I really find this polling mechanism for chat updates clumsy - maybe there is some Java applet available that we could use for the chat ? Except that this creates browser problems with at least Netscape, but that could maybe be fixed by using the user settings ...
On the other side, I really like the chat feature and there are many people here with whom I like to chat, so the chat is really a feature and not a gizmo ;)
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