Fragments from olden times

Every now and then I stumble upon not exactly old websites. Just sites designed by people who learned how to do so in the early 2000s.

Characterised by their poor user interface, they are often a pain to use, but they are way too fun to browse.

I can only imagine the pain of actually relying on these websites, but being a short–term visitor to them takes me back to times I could never have experienced.

From the excessive amounts of coffee the programmer used just to stay awake for this one more night, promising they’d never do it again, but finding themselves in the same position just one week later.

From the feelings they might have had when making specific portions of the site. Did they think their work looked good? Were they interested in the process of creating something marvellous, or were they just in it for the money?

I think this is a shared experience in everyone who ever created something. Feelings are enclosed within maybe just a word or a sentence, capturing for as long as our memory can hold the feelings we had when we wrote it down.

It’s what makes our things ours. Laden with our thoughts and emotions, we will always recognise our signature in the rough.

Others will not, they don’t share the same bond with the creation, and they will sit and ponder one day, just like me, “what might they have thought?”

The sad truth, with these kinds of ‘artefacts’, their creators have moved on to new harbours.

The early web designer now is just lost in the crowd of everyone else. Their work not extraordinary enough to be thought of, shallow data just meant to be used, means of communication between the user and the computer.

There was never art in it. It was the same, back then and now. The outlandishness of websites I am not used to seeing anymore lead me to make up a backstory several times more interesting than the thing itself.