If you want persistent IRC history/logs and notifications without having to have a computer online all the time, but you don't have/know how to set up a server, you can use the Matrix network to stay connected.
To get started, open
It'll say "Click here to join the discussion". If you don't have a Matrix account already, just do that, and enter a username, click Continue and fill out the captcha and you're in!
(If you already have a Matrix account, instead click "Login" and enter your details.)
Once you're in, you should as soon as possible click the cogwheel/open https://riot.im/app/#/settings to set a password and e-mail for your Matrix account.
Riot is a client for the Matrix network. Matrix is sort of a supercharged IRC network/protocol, which "bridges" into regular IRC networks like Freenode but also provides a host of other features.
Read more about the relation between Matrix and IRC at https://opensource.com/article/17/5/introducing-riot-IRC – including how to change or register your IRC nick.
See https://matrix.org/ for the "backend" bits.
Note that your IRC chats will be going through the matrix.org server. For public, logged channels like #apertium, this isn't any concern, but for one-on-one conversations there will be one more server that technically could log things (although one-on-one conversations on IRC can potentially be logged by freenode too). Matrix is free and open source, so you can set up your own Matrix server, but that seems to take away the point of this being a low-maintenance way to get persistent IRC connections (and in that case, https://weechat.org/ is much simpler to set up).
OTOH, if you're chatting with other Matrix users, it actually becomes more secure, since Matrix provides end-to-end encryption between Matrix users.
 Remove [m] from your IRC nick
- Open a private chat with
@appservice-irc:matrix.organd tell it
!nick irc.freenode.net NewNickGoesHere
- See also: https://github.com/matrix-org/matrix-appservice-irc/blob/master/HOWTO.md#changing-nicks
- See also: https://opensource.com/article/17/5/introducing-riot-IRC for information about how to change your IRC nick (and more details in general on using chatting through Matrix).
 Join new channels
Use this template (replace "ChannelName" with the name of the channel you want to join):