Algorithms Channel Migrates to Libera Chat

By Susam Pal on 19 May 2021

Our ##algorithms that has been running on the Freenode IRC network for the last 14 years is now migrating to the Libera Chat IRC network. Our new channel name on Libera Chat is #algorithms.

History

The original ##algorithms channel on Freenode IRC began as an offshoot of the ##math channel there when we found that there was enough interest in the latter to form a channel dedicated to the subject of algorithms and data structures. I created the new channel for algorithms in 2007. I used to go by the nick spal and used to be active on both channels.

What began as a tiny hobby club around algorithms gradually grew to be be a thriving community with over 200 members. I don't participate in the channel much anymore but a highly talented group of moderators helps maintain the channel.

Migration

The original Freenode staff that used to run the Freenode network has stepped down after a controversial change in management of Freenode. The former Freenode staff has now launched a new IRC network named Libera Chat. Thousands of channels that used to exist on Freenode IRC earlier have been rapidly migrating to Libera Chat now. For more on the events that led to this mass migration, see this post: The Freenode Resignation FAQ.

The ##algorithms channel too has now moved from Freenode to Libera Chat. Our new channel name is #algorithms on Libera Chat. Our entire operator team for the channel is also moving to the new channel. The old channel on Freenode should now be considered defunct.

Old Channel Information

Here is the last known good state of the ##algorithms channel on Freenode before we declared the channel defunct.

/msg chanserv info ##algorithms
Information on ##algorithms:
Founder    : spal
Successor  : halberd
Registered : Oct 13 19:49:56 2007 (13y 31w 5d ago)
Mode lock  : +ntcC
Flags      : GUARD
*** End of Info ***

New Channel Information

Here is the current information of the new channel named #algorithms on Libera Chat.

/msg chanserv info #algorithms
Information on #algorithms:
Founder    : susam
Successor  : libera-placeholder-account
Registered : May 19 14:52:38 2021 +0000 (2h ago)
Mode lock  : +nt-lk
Flags      : GUARD PUBACL
*** End of Info ***

Join

If you are new to the world of IRC, here are some steps to join the Libera Chat IRC network:

  1. Install Irssi, an IRC chat client. On macOS, enter the following command if you have Homebrew:

    brew install irssi

    On Debian, Ubuntu, or another Debian-based Linux system, enter the following command:

    sudo apt-get install irssi

    For other systems or environments, see irssi.org.

  2. Enter the following command to connect to Libera Chat:

    irssi -c irc.libera.chat
  3. Now type these IRC commands into Irssi to join some channels:

    /join #algorithms
    /join #irssi
    /join #libera
    /join #linux
    
  4. Enter this IRC command into Irssi to send me a message if you need any help:

    /msg susam hello

You can also join the algorithms channel via Libera Chat's web interface at web.libera.chat. This can be useful for those who want to join the network quickly without installing a client. Further there is a Matrix bridge to the channel accessible via #algorithms:libera.chat. The Matrix bridge is quite convenient for someone unfamiliar with IRC. For example, you can close your browser or client and your chat session will still stay alive on the Matrix bridge. You can connect back the next day and catch up with the messages. Doing that with IRC requires setting up an IRC bouncers which may feel like considerable additional work.

Freenode Wipes Database

Update on 15 Jun 2021: All old communities on the Freenode IRC network are now gone. The new Freenode staff has wiped out their database thereby resetting the state of their network. We learnt about this when we received these global notices in our clients connected to the Freenode IRC network:

-root- [Global Notice 1/3] We are moving past legacy freenode to a new
       fork. The new freenode is launched. You will slowly be
       disconnected and when you reconnect, you will be on the new
       freenode. We patiently await to welcome you in freedom's
       holdout - the freenode.

-root- [Global Notice 2/3] If you're looking to connect now, you can
       already /server chat.freenode.net 6697 (ssl) or 6667
       (plaintext). It's a new genesis for a new era. Thank you for
       using freenode, and Hello World, from the future. freenode is
       IRC. freenode is FOSS. freenode is freedom.

-root- [Global Notice 3/3] When you connect, register your nickname
       and your channel and get started. It's a new world. We're so
       happy to welcome you and the millions of others. We will be
       posting more information in the coming days on our website and
       twitter. Otherwise, see you on the other side!

See this thread on Reddit for a discussion on this event: reddit.com/r/irc/comments/o01tmv.

What this really means is that decades old nicks and channels are completely wiped out! For example, my own 15 year old nick is now gone. Our algorithms channel on the Freenode network is also gone. All the nicks and other channels I was familiar with are also gone. I am not going to bother registering my nick and our channel there again! It is not worth it. We have all moved on to Libera Chat already and there is nothing left on Freenode to care about it anymore.

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