For 2020 I redesigned my website homepage and freshened up the site. It had been virtually unchanged for about four years. During the redesign, I had a look back to all of my previous websites; I have kept an archive of all major updates since 1996. Here are 20 screenshots of the homepage for my website covering 24 years. We’ll start at the present and go backwards in Web time.
Here is the new homepage launched on 1/1/2010. It has a rotating image gallery corresponding to the eight main pages.
Seven simple “activity icons” linking to seven pages: Library, Writing, Reading, Hiking, MINI, Beer, and Gallery.
Despite moving to WordPress in 2014, I still wanted to keep a static homepage that I could design however I wanted. I also wanted it to be responsive and use only div tags for placement. This was the original “activity icons” homepage before the addition of a Hiking page and a Gallery.
Windows 8 was released in late 2012. For this version of my website I wanted to simulate a Windows desktop experience. So my homepage was made to resemble a Windows login screen. No password was required to enter; simply click the yellow <enter> button.
My homepage for 2012 was again very simple with a single photo (taken at a portal window on a cruise ship). However, links to the five main pages were not still, they moved randomly around the screen, so you had to chase them with your mouse.
The original version with my cruise ship photo and a row of links that did not move.
Again, my homepage was a simple, centered image with a row of links below. This one was the final version using my South Park image, a rotating image of me standing, reading, and holding a beer inside the Seattle Public Library where I had visited recently. This page has my favorite background color (#86abc8) of all of them.
In early 2006 I created this placeholder homepage. It had the first version of my South Park image. After black and grey backgrounds, I wanted a bright color for this page, thus the vivid blue. The site had no content.
This homepage was inspired by science textbooks and modern art, influenced by Douglas Coupland’s website at the time. I kept the background dark grey so the colors would stand out. Clicking on the colored balls took you to the page listed in the legend below.
Always a minimalist design: a title, row of links, and a rotating image gallery in the middle. The image shown was a scanned, reversed, and manipulated scan of a sheet of bubble-wrap. Instead of a row of links separated by pipes, I imitated a math equation.
The original version had a row of text links above a rotating image gallery. The image shown was a real Spin Art Maker paining, scanned and color-inverted. All of the images were negative images of my photos and found graphics. This was the first design after moving to my own domain jamesday.net.
This homepage was very minimal with the only text being my name in a modern, purple sans-serif font. Each of the four square panes were mystery links, becoming negative upon hover. This was the first version on my Road Runner address at home.cfl.rr.com/jamesday.
The first version used a green serif font. This homepage launched in late 2000.
This version is starting to look like an “old-fashioned” Web 1.0 homepage. But all of the links were graphics, laid out in a grid. The photo was an arty black and white taken by an artist friend in the backyard of my house in Orlando
The original version of my early 2000 homepage using an older photo. HTML tables were still new at this time, so I took advantage of one to lay out my graphical links in rows and columns. A current trend was keeping the homepage to a single screen, with no scrolling, which was done here.
Late 1990s homepages were long pages, often laid out like a document. This version had a black background but the right-justified photo was a new feature. I used bright yellow links. This was the last homepage with an “Updated” date.
Here is an earlier 1998 version without my photo.
This homepage from late 1997 was the beginning of a long line of black-background homepages. I had started my first librarian job so it was kept short and professional (for the times), though I had the personal touch of including my girlfriend at the time in my main photo and links. My niece, Taylor, had just been born, so I added a link to a webpage I created announcing her birth.
This version shouts World Wide Web 1.0. It was the last version with a repeating background image. Although the date at the bottom shows “February 21, 1997” this version was actually from late 1997 (but before the version above). This was the first version at www.cflc.net/~jday.
This is the first version of my homepage from August 1996. It was created while I was in Library school. Notice the classic early animated “Under construction” sign and the Netscape 2.0 badge! No frames because frames were bad. But in 1996 just having a webpage with graphics was still fairly new.
My mom was a very early adopter of AOL using a dial-up modem, so I had access to online services as a teenager. Since the day in the UCF library when I first heard about the Internet and World Wide Web, I was fascinated. A friend gave me a floppy disk containing the Mosiac browser along with TCP/IP stack software that needed to be loaded before accessing the Web. I had the eighth student email address at UCF which I purchased at the bookstore for $25! And as I explored the Web, I knew I had to have my small place on it. I also saw how the Web was going to fundamentally change libraries and that started me considering a career as a librarian instead of engineering. I wanted in at the beginning.