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Introduction: Hacks #58-63

IRCócan be dull without a little silliness thrown in for good measure. Not all bots have to serve a serious, clearly defined purpose, and this chapter aims to prove that.

Adventure gamers may find the DiceBot useful, as it can be used to simulate dice rolls, allowing the results to be seen by everybody in the channel. This reduces the chance of cheating on Internet-wide games, and bored users can even push their luck with the Russian roulette subgame built into the bot. While they are playing their games, they can use the egg timer bot to help them cook the perfect egg and remind them when to take it off the boil.

A great way of learning (OK, wasting time) on IRC is to join a channel with a trivia bot. These bots ask questions and award points to the first person to guess the correct answer. This chapter shows you how to make your own basic trivia bot, leaving plenty of room for extra features if you want to add them. If any of the questions are of a mathematical nature, you could even use the MathBot described in this chapter to help you out. Just don't rely on an artificial intelligence bot to make too much sense if you ask it for help, as the one described in this chapter is hardly likely to beat the Turing Test.

The last hack in this chapter shows you how to set up a ComicBot to sit in your channel and draw comic strips when funny things happen. You can put these comic strips on the Web and show people what a great time you have in your channel.

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