This week’s blast from the past comes as a collective effort.
Remember this guy?
That’s Khaled Mardam-Bey and he created mIRC, an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) client for Windows in 1995. That’s 21 years ago. For many it was the first chatting platform ever, a place of intense social interaction and not so cool nicknames.
Speaking of nicknames, here’s a what people around the office were using during those days.
mIRC users numbers peaked somewhere in 2003, before people started using MSN Messenger. Meaning that much of WeTek's workforce was using it during teen years. Bearing this in mind what do you think people around the office answer when asked "what memories do you hold of that time?" Yeap: it seem like everyone remembers flirting mostly.
Pablo however, started using the platform a bit earlier. "As computer student, I started using "Talkers" on Unix terminals, entering in rooms where most of the users would be engineers and where a female nick could actually be a girl and not troll. As I was studying music as well, my nickname was "Mozart".
Victoria started using mIRC at the age of 17 and her experiences are slightly different from Pablo's. "Meeting people you would ever had the opportunity to meet in your life.
And do you remember all these codes to makes these roses, or teddy bears, or hearts or whatever?" Yes we do, Victoria!
Regarding design such as beautiful ASCII art, our in house designer Eduardo has this to say: "SMaLL LoWeRCaSe BiG uPPeRCaSe".
Some chat rooms actually developed into real life communities that would get together from time to time as Victoria explains: "I met a group of people once. We all gathered at Oporto and there were people from all around the country! Good old times."
What about the power? Oh the sweet, sweet power that came with having the "@" symbol as a prefix to the nickname. It would indicate that you're an operator on that channel. Pablo actually got to that level, but not without sacrifice... "During Christmas eve, there was a channel that would have a give away at midnight. So I moved away from my family, connected my dial-up modem, accessed the IRC... and that was how I got my first @Operator user status!"
I think I have just found the best way to finish this little blast from the past.