swallowbush is no longer…

It is official, my previous domain www.swallowbush.com has been retired, and I don’t intend on bringing her back. We had a great 6 year run, and she held together until the end. A lot of the things that I will miss are easily found in Drupal, and some of the things that aren’t, will always be with me, guiding me through development in the future. Our saga has come to a close, and for that reason I am going to tell you a few of the good and bad experiences with developing my own website.

Opening days

I was fresh into my sophomore year of high school in Cupertino and I was already gone. My mind had actually been gone for a few years; I just hadn’t realized it yet. I had been raised on the internet reading and researching, I had never even thought that I had the ability to put my own content up there, until… Angelfire/Geocities. They gave out free hosting to people and I jumped on it. My site was really shitty, mainly pictures of a gorilla that I had doctored to hold a bag of gold and some greenbacks in his other hand, collectively called the skrilla gorilla.

HTML gave me no gruff and fell into place rather easily; although all I was doing was adding to a text file, uploading it and seeing amazing rendered results, I was amazed. The simplicity of it was amazing, and how quickly I was able to throw my bullshit around made me want to sing. My heart and mind were ablaze with questions and I would stay up nights trying to make things go further and trying to add formatting to my page. I was amazed at little things like ordered lists and paragraph tags and borders. My site was an early blog for myself, but no one came to it and only I updated it.

Updating the site was indeed a pain, in hindsight. In fact I am pretty sure that the whole process was flawed. I remember uploading files en masse and being a slave to my 56k connection, watching as 130k of files would take me a year and a half to upload. I knew there would be a faster, better option soon, but I wasn’t going to wait around for it. Little did I know that a quarter of the world away a man was going to make my life a million times easier. Regardless, I knew I was destined for bigger and better things.

I decided that I was going to build my own site in late 2000, and started work on more of the cool stuff, that I later learned to hate – frames, flash and javascript. I used iframes to encapsulate the content that would change often, like the blog or any documentation that I would use. Actually I went pretty far with it and eventually had my very own very annoying website, chock full of javascript popups and other irritating things. The most important thing is that I did it in about twelve hours, yes straight, leaving the rest of the month to write, and I did.