Friday, 29 March 2013

My 1st Website competition

Asking someone to think back to the first web site they built, is a bit like making us remember back to days of shoulder pads and flares, dodgy haircuts and summer holidays spent camping in Bognor Regis... painful.

Frontpage, that scourge of many a would be website designer was my weapon of choice. (It was that or Hot Metal, which had come free with a copy of PC Pro or some such monthly magazine).  Easy to use and manipulate if you were savvy with the office suite, but not so user friendly if you were viewing the pages online.  Windows 95 had just arrived and amazed by how evolved it was on my little pentium with a whole 16gb of ram and connected to the world wide web by my 56k modem, I set about building my homage to Buffy and Angel and all things sci-fi.

At the time it seemed so clever, full of  every free line of code to do something that I could find, but when I think about it now, quite painfully sad and one dimensional.    I had a free hosting account on a server which was a bit dodgy, but it allowed me to host animated gif's.  They were really clever and they didn't take any programming expertise as I could just upload them like a picture.  In those days, I was all for free code, free ideas and flying by the seat of my pants.  The page was not professional in any way shape or form, but I loved it, it was my baby and I spent many hours looking at ways to improve on it, until it was a mismash of different styles all clustered around a black background.  I don't have many of the gifs saved on this pc anymore....

But some of them were amazing!
There were words flying in from all angles as the pages loaded, fonts of every shape and style clustered together like an advert for "how not to write a web page" and links that glowed and spun when you clicked on them.  I showed absolutely no respect for anyone waiting for the page to load as for me less is more was not a concept that I understood.
The website evolved over time to become far more polished and user friendly.  I learnt to make sure that it was compatible with all browsers, discovered Macromedia Dreamweaver and Invision power boards and ran a succesful forum from it for years.  I laid it to rest about four years ago, destined to live on only in my memory and now just build and look after the website for work, which is hosted on 123.reg.  It is because of them that I am writing this trip down memory lane as part of a competition they are running, the details of which you can find here: , although I suspect that I may soon find myself one bored and lonely evening building another just for fun as thinking back has made me yearn for something more than just my little blog... now I wonder what freebies do they have?

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