in Markel!

Humble Beginnings, or: I Have Been Doing This a Long Time

On a whim, I just looked up the oldest URL of mine that I can remember (no, I will not tell you what it is) on the Wayback Machine. I found this, excerpted to avoid the embarrassing-I-was-just-out-of-college-parts:

It’s the first post I wrote on my own domain, though I am fairly certain my actual earliest blog post is somewhere (thankfully) lost to the mists of time as it was on LiveJournal sometime in 1999 or 2000.

The system that powered the post you are seeing part of there was a custom front-end I wrote in ASP that used the backend of Snitz Forums. I made it using Dreamweaver and at the time I think (though I am not sure) that it was hosted on SimpleNet. It had comments in that if you clicked through you would be taken to a forum thread, and it actually had categories that would display a different header image above each post based on that taxonomy, which was set by the forum in which the post was created.

My habits of blogging have come and gone in the intervening years. But it is really cool to think that I have been invested and interested in publishing on the internet for that long. From hand-coding a site using TeachText and a giant book on HTML 3 in my bedroom, to making my first site that relied on a database, to discovering, playing with, and professionally supporting WordPress today, it’s been a huge part of my life.

When I was giving the beginners’ workshop on WordPress at WordCamp St. Louis, I took a moment after explaining how to create the first post on a blog to reflect along with the people in that room. More than half of them were completely new to WordPress and maybe even to blogging, as I once was. I asked them to stop and consider what I had just done.

When you stop and think about it, it’s amazing how much easier it is now to be able to click a button and have the words you write made public for the world to read. You and I can write about just about anything and we’re enabled to nearly instantly beam that out so others can find it, read it, maybe identify with it, and even respond to it with their own Publish button.

The amount of power that confers on people is still amazing to me. That’s why I still do this; that’s why I help other people do so as well.

Advertisements

Leave a comment:

  1. It is really awesome helping people figure out how to tell their own story… you help on the technical side and I get to talk to people about how to think about what content they may want to share. It’s all good