A PoC IRC client using Cinch
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This is a PoC IRC client written in Ruby, using the Cinch IRC library and Qt4.

The main intention of this client is to demonstrate that the Cinch library, while actually being a framework for writing bots, can also be used for writing other kinds of applications, including clients.

Various disclaimers

This application is not supposed to offer a fully working IRC client. In fact it is very limited and only supports a very basic subset of IRC. This is not due to missing functionality in Cinch itself but caused by the very nature of a PoC. It would be easily possible to extend this client to write a client similar to e.g. XChat.

Additionally, this is my first application written using the Qt framework and may as such contain various code smells and bad design choices. Again, the only intention of this piece of code is to demonstrate possibilities offered by Cinch, not to teach how to write GUI applications in Ruby.


  • The Cinch framework (gem name: cinch)
  • Qt4 (for example by using "korundum" or the gem "qtbindings")


The client only supports a single connection and joining a single channel. The configuration is done by editing three constants in the head of client.rb

Running the client

Simply run the client.rb file. You will be presented with a window that contains, from left to right, top to bottom:

  • a channel list, which lists all currently joined channels (only one is supported so far)
  • The chat area, which will contain status and chat messages
  • The nick list, which lists all users currently in the channel
  • The input bar to send messages. (Press return to send a message)


  • Sending and receiving of messages
  • Notification about joining and leaving users
    • the user list will be updated as well

A note on the screenshot

The screenshot (screenshot.png) shows really poor font rendering. This is not the fault of Qt but my system configuration which I did not bother to adjust for Qt.

Known bugs

  • It can happen that the client will not update until an event is fired, e.g. by moving the mouse or resizing the window. This is caused by us blatantly modifying the UI from threads other than the main thread, which is a no-go with most GUI toolkits.