I've found 2 text terminal edition: irssi and ircII, there is also a link to windows edition: mIRC. Heared this name several times, but never used it myself, if you are using windows as your platform, you can try this software.
IRC is a free IM protocol, whereas, the MSN, QQ, ICQ, AIM, Gtalk,,,,etc. are privated by some person or single compony, but IRC is owned by we all human beings. For those who eager to freedom of human right, it's a not bad idea to have a try. Also, for programmers, it's a good idea to try this IM protocol, too.