An adventure in webdesign

Time was all you needed for a sweet website was some awesome rotating skull .gifs and some killer flame.gifs, a black background, neon green copy and system fonts.
I remember those days fondly, heading over to Geocities (now defunct) and making a website devoted to whatever band was awesome at the time. It took about 5 minutes (10 if you were making it extra AWESOME) and once you’d stolen enough copy, smack a JavaScript counter on there and you were set!

geo

Once your site was made, you’d hit refresh a bunch of times to make it look more popular than it was, and then later that afternoon you’d forget all about it and make another one in a day or so.

The thing is, every single Geocities site was utter garbage, really just shit, but they were fun to make, it was at a time when having a background was a big deal! It was at a curious time in web design where there were practically no rules at all, today if you tried to make a website out of tables some guy with a Mac would appear behind you and smack you about the head with a silk stress cushion.

I’ve always had a passing interest in web design, I believe that when harnessed properly you can create some truly wonderful things. My area of expertise (if I have one in this area) lies in CSS and HTML, hardly venturing into the wilderness that is PHP and ASP and all that stuff. However, recently I was presented a fine opportunity to redesign and rebuild my company’s website.

“Fantastic!” I thought, “I can finally fix all the stuff that’s been bugging me! I can finally implement proper colour schemes and layouts and oh it’s going to be SUCH a joy!”
So I jumped straight in feet first, quickly finding myself drowning in PHP.

web design now. fun.

web design now. fun.

Now worry not, dear reader, I have a handle on it now, oh yes indeed I do. But my point is this, when did making websites become such a HUGE pain in the arse? Maybe it’s because I’m going the ‘free’ route and not using Dreamweaver or any such product, but why should I have to? At what point did the internet become such a grown up all of a sudden? Nobody wants to have any fun anymore, even this very blog has that nice clean look that’s so very popular amongst blogs and “web2.0” sites in general.

Please don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that we now have beautiful design on the internet, I really am, but can people please start to have fun with them again? Please?

– Martin

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