I am very unsatisfied with todays chat clients (IRC,…). I take xchat-gnome as an example. What is bad about it? The window needs to be large to be usable. I wish that the windows would not be full of logins and logoffs. I also would wish that I get displayed all messages to me since the last hours by a simple click. Also instead of a search I would prefer a filter. Also servers do not have to be displayed. All server messages could be displayed in some hidden windows. Only on connection maybe there should an inbox, for server messages. These should be cached so you only get new messages and not the standard ones. The login message should just be a meta info of the server. There is no such thing as meta info of a server.
For the users I wish I also could add meta information and link this to Evolution like its done in GAIM – link to blogs, notes, photos/avatars, aliases etc..
What is also missing is an integration of pastebins as these are most widely used. There should be a mechanism to prevent spamming of a channel that should be enabled by default. You get a warning if you want to send an empty email – so you also should get a warning when you want to paste 200 lines of code in a channel. The chat program should autconfigure pastebins that are mentioned in the topic.
Every channel also should have meta information (like #fedora-> http://www.fedoraproject.org or a link to backlogs)
For me all IRC clients work at maybe 1 % of what they could do and they are not helpful at all and there is no progress. The only progress really is coming from jabber clients. Some prefer command line chat clients – but they are not integrated in the desktop at all. I also work mostly on command line, but I expect gui applications to work more intelligently.
Addition: I also would like to see a more sufficient bookmark handling. By that I mean: a) Clicking in a link should open a browser. It should not happen that the chat moves while clicking on a link. Also the user should get a feedback if the click was successful. I often have to click more than once and then also maybe have 3-4 open windows. Also I would like to have a better bookmark collector. A tool which has to be open all the time is not very helpful, especially when xchat already has a big window. It should also be better visible if an URL is for the own nickname.
Another addition: I would also like to have the possibility to search for a marked term in Wikipedia or Google.
And yet another update: The sheer number of possible servers is overhwhelming. In a browser you do not get a filled bookmark list. So you also should not get this with a chat client. Maybe one can have server bookmark packages which are organized like bookmarks (and contain more than one possible host? I also love to see better integration of server addresses into web browsers. Right now you cant handle IRC bookmarks very well in Firefox or Epiphany. But its a ressource they should be able to handle.