Obscure History

When I started my homepage in 1995, I liked to experiment with new designs every few months. Luckily I kept the old formats archived away in case I wanted to look at them again someday. I recently opened them and took screenshots, and it’s interesting to note that while Chrome and Firefox won’t display the older pages correctly, IE is able to show them just fine. Anyway, here’s a look at how the page has evolved since it was first slammed rather messily onto the Net 16+ years ago — you can see gradually get better as I tried new and fancier things. There are a few holes where graphics are missing…I have no idea where they went, but most of the homepages are intact.

Click the photos to see the full versions in all their “glory”…

August 1996
Ugh, this is truly hideous. Of course, it was one of my first layouts and I was doing it all BY HAND…no fancy HTML programs, just typing in code. That’s why it’s so hideous. This isn’t even the very first page — I don’t seem to have that one anywhere, which is a bummer because I can’t remember what it looked like. Maybe it’s better that nobody knows…
1996 August

September 1996
A few things added, a few things removed. One notable addition is my anti-liberals page, which today I am somewhat ashamed of…but hey, I was in my early 20s and hadn’t figured myself out completely yet! Especially living in Arizona…talk about a conservative brainwash-o-rama. (I will never put that material back online, have no fear! I can barely make myself read it.)
1996 September

March 1997
I think this was my first page with frames and a counter. The icons on the left were way too big, but oh well!
1997 March

July 1997
I finally got around to making some custom graphics for the different sections, and got rid of those damn frames in favor of more tables. I also took my liberal-bashing page and put it on the back burner…my politics changed quite a bit around this time and I got into the Libertarian stuff. The slow shift from thinking-I-was-conservative to today’s liberal had begun.
1997 July

October 1997
This was something I had always wanted to do: make a webpage that looked more or less like a Mac desktop. So I painstakingly took screenshots of my window graphics and icons, and somehow got them to fit into tables…it was a nightmare. Just so y’all know I suffered…
1997 October

December 1997
Back to frames! The windows-like tables were getting way too annoying to maintain so I trashed ’em.
1997 December

April 1998
More little icons on the left, plus a silly thing called This Week’s Cool CD where I blabbed about some new CD I liked and included clips. Whatever!!
1998 April

May 1998
Uh… This one isn’t much different than the last, I just realized. Hmmm. Oh yeah, I added the Sporkcam around this time.
1998 May

November 1998
Finally got rid of that green circuit background and went for good ol’ cracked mud. I also changed the main logo for the first time ever! It was about damn time… The Absurd Polls also started showing up around this time.
1998 November

June 1999
This is one of my faves. Each major section had its own part of the body, complete with diagrams and everything. I used clip-art of brains and skin and lungs, it was a real hoot! I didn’t save the pages of the other sections though, so that’s a bummer.
1999 June

October 1999
I decided drop the Human Body design for something a little less “involved”, so I switched to this. I made the “Today’s Top Story” bit the centerpiece as something new for people to see every week… It’s pretty straightforward, nothing too fancy. I had been wanting to use that blue crinkle background for a long time, so that’s in there too. (I wasn’t able to get a screenshot on a modern browser for this one because I can’t find the original files, so I’m glad I took a screenshot back then!)
1999 October

February 2000
Nothing too dramatic here, just a re-shuffling of the design and the addition of “Popular Moronics” which I wanted to make into a regular thing, but it didn’t really go anywhere. Maybe Ricky Martin is moronic enough…my page already has enough pictures with snippy captions under them, dontcha think?? So as usual, the design changed but the content didn’t.
2000 February

March 2000
I got really bored one day and wanted to teach myself how to use Adobe GoLive 4, and what better way to do that than to redesign my homepage, eh? So I decided to resurrect the old Human Body design but get a little flashier with it and add more colorful graphics… It took me ALL day (I was REALLY bored), but somehow it got done. A lot of work with Photoshop paid off with some cool graphics, and I’ve been wanting to use those little red clip-art danger signs for a long time so it was time to put those to use. I’ve always found certain danger signs to be humorous, especially the ones where they show people falling or getting electrocuted or whatever. I remember one at the Grand Canyon that actually showed a person falling off a cliff! So I’ve had lots of fun with those. (My favorite one is the “no strollers” sign, which actually isn’t a real sign…I just put a slash through the stroller. 🙂 A lot of work went into this page — even picking the right shade of yellow for the text boxes was a chore. But it was a good way to learn more about GoLive and its little quirks.
2000 March

June 2001
I must have gotten tired of the body parts theme because at this point I changed to a longer, more texty sort of design with a ton of crap on the front page.
2001 June

June 2003
A couple of years later, and things are looking quite different. Around this time I started putting custom pics on the front page, like Down With The Clown and the Homeland Security Alert. I think the title font was being rotated fairly often, too…this was apparently the Harry Potter font.
2003 June

2004-2010
These were my TypePad years, my first time using an actual blogging service.  It was great for a while, but I eventually got tired of the limited design choices and decided to move on.

2010 August

2011-2015
I moved my blog over to a self-hosted WordPress site so I could take back control over the site’s design and other things. Not the prettiest look but it did the job.

2014 March

Here’s what it looked like just before the September ’15 switch to wordpress.com.
Sept 2015

Wheeee!

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