It all started with “I don’t like it” and I cried. Okay, I just a shed a tear. Or two. Hey, web design isn’t easy, you know.
I lived a life during Web 1.0. “Oh, so that’s what it’s called.” I didn’t even know that was the name for it, to be honest, until today when I did some research. (You can shimmy on down to this Web 2.0 Wikipedia entry and read the Web 1.0 part to get a better handle of what I’m talking about). After tiring of chats, I had one other preoccupation – I envied many a friend’s website secretly.
You’d be surprised that the sheer creativity of these guys. All that image slicing and html’ing. I marveled at how they were able to stretch and explore possibilities from such limited resources. I praised and complimented until I could take it no more and asked one of those friends, “how the heck do you do it?” To my surprise, she smiled and said, “I’ll teach you.” That, my friends, began my wild and wondrous adventure into the world of website design and development.
Unfortunately, I was pretty lazy. Lazy and coding don’t mix. After 20 years (has it been really that long), it’s only now I realized how much I missed a lot of things (sigh). One of which was, I wish I had the patience back then. I could’ve had something done then by now. To make a long story short, it was that nostalgia that made me long to begin again. We can never turn back time, I’m aware. I think it’s not too late, though, is it?
“I don’t like it.”
When the nostalgia bug hit me a few months ago, I began coding a few projects the web 1.0 way – that is, the rudimentary HTML and CSS method via notepad that came with making static pages. Yes, admittedly, I designed the way they did back then.
It’s all just for fun, actually. A constructive way to rid myself of the envy blues I had all for those old sites, by making my own. As I worked, I felt a tiny sense of satisfaction, feeling old e-ghosts that hung around surreptitiously slowly slithering away. I lived in this fantasy world for around two months when, one day, my BFF asked if she could show a school mate some of my work. Suspicious was I but unwittingly, I shrugged and agreed.
The next day, she told me, “My school mate didn’t like your websites.” At first I was confused, but after she explained that the dude was looking for a web designer, it dawned on me and I sighed. I told her, “of course he wouldn’t like it” and left it at that.
I carried on as if nothing happened, but, boy, it smarted, I must admit. I didn’t want to accept at first that there was some pain, but after some moments, I had to. My e-bubble burst, after all. My lower lip started to shake and water was forming at the edge of an eye, when that heaviness inside me sort of just curled up into a ball – and I got, well, angry. Not killing-aura angry, just… I just thought, enough of this self pity. Enough, enough, enough.
What is the happy ending to all this? Well, I guess it’s that cliche of how the sun shines after the rain or a cloud’s silver lining. Normally, after a mishap or a disappointment, I end up weakly twiddling my thumbs and staring into space in defeat. But this… It was a strange little event. I suddenly felt as if… I wanted to prove him wrong. I felt that I wanted to show him that it wasn’t the only sort of work I can do. “I will make him like it!” Okay, I didn’t actually say that, but it gives you an idea what the incident did to me. For the first time in my life, something made the fire inside me start.
The only way I can “get back” at the dude is to for me to prove that I can create Web 2.0 design and it would be something he’d like. Generally speaking, this only means that I should start looking at new technologies and see which sea I can swim in, to be able to make some passable new designs that my intended audience can appreciate at least on a visceral level. It only means that I spent too much time ignorant and ignoring the new stuff whizzing past me without giving it a glance.
So yeah, I think it’s time to stop being lazy and start learning again. Right? Right. So now you have an inkling of how I arrived at this here place. Anyway.
Where this journey will take me, who knows. Only now, I come back with a different kind of determination and motivation that I didn’t possess many years back. Time will come, I know, when I will probably forget about the dude, but at least this post will commemorate it. Him, and the lesson learned that I shall never forget.
Some Reading Reference. ___
“Is There A Web 1.0?” by Jonathan Strickland
E-Learning With Web 1.0 – Wikispaces
What is Web 1.0 – IGI Global (Disseminator of Knowledge)
Coming of Age with the Internet: Remembering Web 1.0 by Jacob Savage
A Timeline of the Development of the Internet and the Worldwide Web – Techopedia