Last year (1997-1998, the reign of Floppy) was the first proper year of a serperate chat system on Redbrick, and was entitled as "Itchy Nuts".
Nuts(Neil's Unix Talker) is a chat server written by some guy called Neil, who lives in England. The Admins and Pooka bastardised the thing by adding new commands, and Redbrick specific commands, entitled "socials".
For example, .plop does a "You take liberties with a defenceless animal that happens to be passing through." and .eskimo link prints "You gently rub your nose against Link's."
Itchy is a NUTs client, it formats things a lot nicer for the user. Itchy stands for "Imaginitively Titled Chat Harbouring Yabbering" (or something pretty similar to that), and was written by Plop.
And all was good. Chat was pretty popular, and lots of people used it. I, for one, met lots of people on it.
Then, on the 28th of May 1998, CSD asked for chat to be taken down, apparantly it was wasting resources (who would have thought!)
28/05 11:07:33: pOOka logged out.
Then followed months of chat-less Redbrick.When the new freshers came on board, hey was the new chat, you'd receive heys from random users, just cos they wanted to talk to you. And the older brickies talked about how chat was sooo good etc.
However, on January 15th 1999, Grimnar and Spinal met with CSD and they permitted chat to come back. Itchy Nuts was gotten up immediately.
However it was always the plan of the admins to get IRC up and working properly on Redbrick, Plop had already configured an IRC server and Bot.
After Mother nearly died in February (I think) 1999, Nurse had to be purged of a SCSI card to keep Mother working, as NUTS ran on Nurse, and wouldn't run right on Mother, no chat was on Redbrick for another while. IRC was mildly succesful, though not quite as popular. There was LOTS of moaning by older members.
In June 1999, Nurse was gotten back up, and Itchy Nuts and IRC are both running on Redbrick. IRC is far more widely used on the Internet, and is easier to maintain, while IRC is less popular among the older users.
Origionally from the Encyclopedia