In early 2004 myself and a small team of volunteers on the GameSurge IRC network started a bot service called X-Bots. The history of how X-Bots came to be is probably enough for a short novel but it isn’t the showcase of this section so I’ll have to cut to the chase ;). X-Bots was a free bot service for gaming groups (referred to as ‘clans’) and gaming related companies (game servers, voice, website hosting and so on). These gaming groups and companies would reside on the GameSurge IRC network and often had need for some automation in their channel in order to give visitors and/or potential customers information or perform various protection tasks.

X-Bots itself wasn’t a web development project. The website was fairly simple but it was the first website I created and did so as a hobby along with the rest of X-Bots. Along with creating and maintaining the website and server I also created the bots, introduced new functionality, hosted them on 4 physical servers and 3 virtual servers and helped manage a team of about 10-15 dedicated volunteer staff from around the globe that helped answer questions and maintain order among our hundreds of serviced user channels and countless users.

X-Bots was a free service and we made absolutely no income from it, other than a handful of generous donations from our users… because of that, freedom to run the project how we saw fit was absolute. I purposely hired helpers and staff who had roughly the same perspective on when the acronym ‘RTFM‘ was appropriate and who I could trust to separate me from the user base when I needed. They also helped drive a large part of the new features I added regularly including the remote configuration GUI we called ‘The Configurator’.

After over a year of dedicated service to our users, quarrels and cooperation between us and our competitors, and countless revisions toward evolution and optimization I ended the project in July of 2005. It ended up consuming most of my free-time one day I just realized that my on-line world was more important to me than the real one and there was a lot to see and experience in the latter. At our height my roommate (who was also staff) and I operated 14 computers at our apartment, about half of those were for the bots or routers. We had one hell of a run and accomplished things that many thought we weren’t capable of. To this day I still keep in touch with much of my former staff and every once in a while we reminisce over the X-Bots project :).

Luckily I recently found a backup of the old website and threw it up on this site. Please excuse any typos or unprofessional behavior as this was not only a hobby but a number of years old! Click here to visit it.