Website evolution – from notepad to WordPress

I was feeling a bit nostalgic recently, for a time when the web was a simpler place, no ads everywhere, search engines that were not ‘dumbed down’ and included ftp sites in their results, no censorship, clean websites with no Flash or other things we now can’t live without.

Like many my first taste of the internet came at university, Oxford Brookes for those interested, I remember sitting in a computer lab and noticing the guy next to me viewing a site called the internet movie database, I think it was hosted at cardiff university back then, I was pretty impressed, I could type in the name of any movie or TV show and it would tell me who was in it!  Being a male and a Star Trek fan my first search was for Deanna Troy, after a few clicks I had her real name ‘Marina Sirtis’ and could see what other things she had starred in, it may not seem a big deal now, but back then when I was on 14400 dialup and subscribed to text based Delphi it was pretty amazing, one text based thing I do miss is bulletin boards, scouting through the back pages of computer magazines looking for telephone numbers, then connecting to a server and exploring the content held a certain thrill.

When I eventually got ‘real’ internet at home, as opposed to text based internet and email, I decided to build my own website, research was fun and mainly consisted of  looking at other peoples websites and jotting down interesting html code in a notepad, yup the paper kind, after that it was trial and error, write some html code, open it in Netscape Navigator to see if it looked right, rinse and repeat.   After several days I had my first site, with all the typical noob mistakes, if it was flashy it must be cool!

My first website

My first website

Click the image to visit the site if you dare, the first page is a landig page with a wave background modified from a tiling marble windows wallpaper, an animated gif countdown timer which I made myself, and an html animation code which looks a bit like the looney toons zoom in effect you see at the end of cartoons.  The main site is pretty simple to use, but be warned it plays a repeating midi file, most of the graphics are my own, that owl took me ages to draw, although some of the navigation icons are modified windows ones.  I don’t think its an awful page, but very 90’s.

My second website

My second website

My second site never really did much, it was basically made so people could download music videos I had captured, and show a few pictures of Kylie, it also plays a looping midi file sorry, all the music videos are now removed, when I joined World Wind I turned away from the dark side, I must admit it was fun though, and very hard work, ‘The Scene’ has very strict rules and guidlines.

My 3rd site

My third website

My third site was made using netobjects fusion 7, it looked ok, but fusion had limited templates and it was a real pain to modify stuff , hence I was never really happy with the site.

My fourth website

My fourth website

Not really a website, but my first blog, I was pretty happy with this, but blogspot was always refusing to submit posts so I gave up on it and decided to move to something which could also act as my website.

This website

This website

Thus this website was born, first on wordpress.com then on my own host, I find WordPress pretty amazing, it is simple to use, designing a site takes minutes, widgets and plugins allow easy addition of powerful features, and if you want total control you can easily edit the css and html, I once tried dreamweaver and after several days had nothing but a headache, they could learn a lot from WordPress.

Back to normal blogging now, as I’m sure I’ve bored everyone enough, if any one made it this far that is ;) .

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