Build Your Site: Adding a Chat Section to your Site

floris

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Jan 17, 2004
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vB Floris submitted a new Article:

Build Your Site: Adding a Chat Section to your Site

Build Your Site: Adding a Chat Section to your Site

We will show you how to expand your web site by adding another section to it. Despite what you might already have (besides your on-line community) this guide will use the example of adding a chat channel for your users to get real-time contact with other members, or live-support for your customers.

Thank you Daniel P. for writing a IRC How-To and allowing me to use parts of it in this guide and Zachery for the great vBXIRC add-on for vBulletin.

Author: Floris Fiedeldij Dop
info@vBulletin.nl
Website: http://www.vBulletin.nl/

My preference goes to IRC chat, for it gives you greater and real-time control over the network, channel, users and chats. So allow me to introduce and explain what 'IRC' chat is.

A short Introduction to IRC

IRC (Internet Relay Chat) is a world wide web internet chat system which allows users from all over the world to connect to a server (with an IRC chat client) that is part of a network of one or more servers (virtual text world) that allows them to chat in real-time in a group-channel with other / multiple users. An example of this server is irc.vbulletin.nl and an example of a channel is #vBnl. After connecting, one picks a username and is able to join a chat channel and participate in conversations. These channels are controlled by channel moderators to make sure chats will not go out of hand. Unlike a forum, chats aren't saved, you can't leave and come back later and simply scroll back to find what chats you might have missed.

A chat section to a web site can benefit the web site by provoking regular members to return again and again and provoke newcomers to participate and keep up to date with the latest news. It can be used for holding chat events, interviews, pre-sales questions or product support. A user who joins the chat channel (guest, member, customer) has a simple overview of any other users on-line and can quickly ask questions personalized questions and get instant feedback.

More details about IRC can be found in the IRC How-To created by our staff member Daniel P.

Oh, before I forget, you can make channels invite only, for private parties. You can also set a private key, to have staff-only...

Read more about this article here...
 
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WebForging

WebForging.com
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Apr 2, 2005
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Good article, but can't get the rest...

Good article! I want to read more!

Unfortunately, the link still isn't working. I've registered, introduced myself, etc., but get the following when I try to read more:


vBulletin Message

WebForging
, you do not have permission to access this page. This could be due to one of several reasons:
  1. Your user account may not have sufficient privileges to access this page. Are you trying to edit someone else's post, access administrative features or some other privileged system?
  2. If you are trying to post, the administrator may have disabled your account, or it may be awaiting activation.
Looking forward to reading the rest.

Regards,
Keith
 

mwookie

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Jan 22, 2007
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What size of community do you recommend before adding chat. I tried this with one of my forums and it kind of flopped. I found that if I wasn't chatting all the time, no one hung around. I ran out of things to say :)
 
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Keev

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Dec 26, 2004
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I had implemented various chat software and well as much as I want to re introduce the chat, for some reason people feel the need to create problems in open chat when a moderator isn't baby sitting the chat room 24/7 and then when members complain you don't have any recourse or logs to see who is causing the problems on your large community... I would love to get feedback on this and solutions to similiar situations...


My idea is something like this, with some sort of log saving method, as well as chat hours or windows the chat is open on set days so everyone knows when to gather rather than having people hit and miss each other in a vacant chat room.
 

CDarklock

Fan
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Nov 16, 2006
Messages
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for some reason people feel the need to create problems in open chat when a moderator isn't baby sitting the chat room 24/7 and then when members complain you don't have any recourse or logs to see who is causing the problems

WTF? You don't have logs? Why not?

with some sort of log saving method, as well as chat hours or windows the chat is open on set days so everyone knows when to gather rather than having people hit and miss each other in a vacant chat room.

Just open a log file and save lines in it.

"Name [Timestamp]: Whatever they said"

Every hour, close the log file and open a new one. Once the log file is closed, count the lines and shove it in a database. Create a calendar interface that displays how many lines of chat were logged each day. Click on a day and you get a display of each hour in the day, with a count of how many lines of chat were logged. Click on an hour, it expands and displays the log. Click on another, the previous hour closes and the new one opens.

It's up to you whether members in general can access these logs, or just staff. I'd leave it open to everyone, because I don't see any reason why you should conceal what was said in open chat, but most people think I'm crazy.

I'm assuming that when you say you "implement" chat, you're talking about writing the actual chat room code. If you're just talking about installing a mod, this is a lot deeper than that ;)
 

cezar

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Joined
Apr 16, 2007
Messages
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nice information , will definetly become useful for my future projects!


Cezar
 
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