We always search the information from Internet with the search engine. The search engine crawls from web to web through hyperlinks. Then the search engine will index the keywords of the websites. Then we search the information based on the keywords.
When we face some problems, and there is no website provides sufficient solution, then we can go to a forum and post our questions. Wait for several days, someone might respond to the questions. The forum is normally a website. Thus, when we search through the search engine, we will also get the results from the forum. Currently, there are services like Yahoo! Answer and WikiAnswers help a lot to solve our problem.
But there is another channel from Internet, that is IRC (Internet Relay Chat). It is not a website. So, we cannot search the information from the result of IRC. But this is a really good channel for us to get the instant solution. For example, when I was doing the GTK+, and have some difficulties about the usage of the library. Searching around from Internet did not get the answer. Then, search for the IRC channel of GNOME. Run an IRC client, connect to IRC server, join the channel, and ask the question. Finally, get the solution. Not only that, when I was trying on Ubuntu, I also asked the questions through IRC. Though I didn’t get the solution, but I got some good information about Ubuntu. Besides that, IRC also allows file sharing, I used to download files from IRC.