This weekend, I felt nostalgic for late 1990s Internet design and went browsing.
There are a few small pools of other people who are nostalgic for the old, goofy, garish designs and, more importantly, having one's own personalized page rather than the uniform Web 2.0 social media appearance.
And I realized this morning that the Internet has always been some kind of game for its users.
I just like the 1990s game much better than the modern game. Elsewhere, I have extensively discussed the modern Internet Game: maximize follower count and follower engagement at any cost.
Back when personalizing and designing one's own site was part of the game, of course maximizing visits (see hit counters) and engagement (see guestbooks) was important, but the game was much more about design itself.
The game then was about learning to code, learning HTML and later CSS. It was about maximizing utility while minimizing image file size.
I think a real life comparison would be that 1990s Internet Games were about maintaining one's home and making it as pretty and as personable as one could, while the modern Internet Game is to maximize attention by just putting up a big, automated billboard that randomly features anything: pictures of other peoples houses, vicious gossip, anything that will catch attention.
Completely related: Theme update! Happy USA Independence Day!
I just discovered Vistaserv today and found it so adorable that I opted to make a site here. I am not really sure what I shall do with the site, though.
This site is work-in-progress.
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