Thursday, March 16, 2006

Gallery Of Web Design Classics: Web 0.2?

Following on from yesterday's "How Web 2.0 Is This?" post, I thought it was worth showcasing a design classic from pre-Web 2.0 - even pre Web 1.0, as far as I can tell - and this is a real classic of the genre.....

SmallStar's Russian Cars Page

- oh YES!

Update: looks like his bandwidth has been exceeded since I tagged this on, so I took a screenshot and stuck it on Flickr here...

I'm not trying to dis the guy here, that's just the way things were done in those early days - I'm just trying to kindle a bit of a warm rosy glow of nostalgia for those who remember these days. I mean, it just has everything GeoCities on one page :
  • "Best Viewed With...." link, or similar - check!
  • Totally unnecessary frameset that doesn't quite work - check! (try clicking on a left-hand link)
  • Default font typography with crazy colours on a black background - check!
  • Scrolling marquee ticker - check!
  • Animated gif "Under Construction" logo - check!
  • Animated flames to imply what's "hot" - check!
  • Missing images - check!
  • "Last Updated" four years ago - check!
  • Really big cheesey hit counter that shows 207 visitors since 1997 - check!
  • Guestbook that doesn't work - check!
  • Has to provide a manual on "how to navigate this web site" - check!
and most important of all :
  • Cheesey Animated Gif for Sending an Email - check!
(warm contented sigh) ahh......memories..... hands up anyone who has a site like this buried deep in their repertoire from the days of yore? Come on, come on, you know who you are... tell me this didn't bring a smile to your face, go on, try it!


Marcos Placona said...

Ahh that was a very good post!
I should say a mix of a nostalgic feeling and a familiar sensation if it was 1995!
I do remember that CGI counters and Guestbooks. Some people used to earn lot's of money "configuring" and selling this. Even I used to sell some magic "mailforms".

From this web page, we can clearly see where we were and where we are now. I'm pretty sure that in more two years we we'll be laughing about our 2006 websites. When will this stop? Hopefully never :-)

Actually we are all really happy with Ajax, and yesterday I was reading about the Ajax future. The static are saying that Ajax will have the same poor future as CGI had, as CGI, Ajax is the beginning of a new concept, and will be replaced with some more powerful app.

What do you think?


Alistair Davidson said...

Oh absolutely - I can't wait for the day when, in a few years time, we're all having a good laugh in the office (or pub) saying things like -

"Hey - anyone remember MashUps??"

and get the howls of pained-yet-affectionate laughter as we remember our folly at what we once thought was The Future™

...probably followed by even more howls at the inevitable reply of :

"Yeah - and AJAX! Gotta have AJAX!"



"...and a PROJECT BLOG to say hey, we're not a faceless corporate, we're just regular guys like you!"

"...ah, they were the days...right, who's for another pint?"

Of course, you're right about AJAX. I fully expect it to be replaced with something else a little way down the road. Technology always does - and should - move on, taking the best bits from each generation and adding more innovation on top. Some will survive, some will not, and one of the things that I love about this industry is that there is always, always something new to learn.

Anas said...

Hi Alistair!

Thanks for the "trip back to the past". I am a website designer myself and use a white background almost exclusively on all my sites. I could never figure why someone would want to use a black background for a site.

MarkH said...

we've used a dark background several times but only on a clients insistence - white is our background of choice.

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