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Flashback - Where It All Began

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Posted 26th November 2011 at 01:44 AM by JennySweets

I called my dad earlier, and we continued the conversation in emails. We’d been crabbing about Microsoft, and it surprised him when I said I got mad at Microsoft when they forced us to go straight into Windows, completely bypassing DOS. How was I going to get straight to what I wanted, and wanted to do?

Funny how I wouldn’t have too much of a clue with DOS now..

He was surprised because he thought I was too young to know about DOS. This was part of my reply.

“You bought me a Tandy TRS 80 when I was 5. I’ve been on computers for that long! Shoot.. I was pretty young when you were trying to get me to sit down with a C book and learn to program. Unfortunately.. that was not my language. Now we have the tools that speak my language and I am learning to speak theirs!

I did learn how to make the computer show me “Hi, my name is Jenny” in multiple colors, but that was about as far as I could go with programming. *chuckle* I’ve always been a pro software user, just not so hot with code. Early HTML was a breeze though!

I had one of the first geocities sites, it was a “walk through” tour of the Marianna Caverns up in north Florida. I had gone through, taken photos, then scanned them in. Every time you clicked on the picture, you would “step into” another room of the cave. I made the background pattern myself, and it changed in relation to the colors of the cave room itself.
For its time, it was pretty advanced, and I loved it! Now adays it would be quaint and extremely simple, but still elegantly functional. Wish I still had that site!

Well the fact is I spent more time on that Tandy playing Dino Wars than anything else.

(I think the guy that wrote the review at that link there must be much younger than me. When I played it as a kid, I laughed my BUTT OFF. The graphics were not a problem since I had no better examples to be spoiled by.)

The web has changed Tremendously since I built that first website.

Back when Google first popped on the scene, I would talk excitedly of the day when you’d be sitting around trying to remember something, and you would just hop on the computer, type in a search, and there’d be a web page for it. No- Hundreds! (Little did I imagine Millions and occasional Billions.) I would look and look for companies- ANY company! smart enough to put a website on their packaging, and those were Seriously Few and Far Between. (Now you can’t blink without seeing an URL somewhere!)

For a while I got sucked into Everquest and City of Heroes. Thank Goodness I had to go tech free before I got swallowed whole by World of Warcraft. (I still imagine goblins spilling out of the woods on occasion when taking nature walks…) However that time away from games was also time away from the web, and the language of website construction. I made it back after Twitter was just about a household name, and Facebook was this new thing that everyone was running to be on, and information had been monetized in more ways than even I’d dreamed was possible.

It was even longer before I could really jump back in and experience this new web. In some ways it’s incredible- in other ways it’s stomach turning. Access to information is endless. The possibilities are endless. The ways to make money online are endless. All of these come in shades of good, bad, and grey.

I’m doing my best as a marketer to stay on the good side of the force.

In a way, what we do when we try to sway people’s opinions or buying habits can feel like Jedi mind trickery. While I like to think of the Jedi as the good guys, it would be foolish to say they wouldn’t admit some of their ways are a moral shade of grey. As marketers, just the fact that we are trying to influence people into spending money, which is actually an emotional thing more than logic, can feel morally grey. Just try your best to stay away from the dark side. The internet universe will be better as a whole if we do.

Yes, I did just compare myself, and you, to a Jedi.

When you look at my profile pic, that’s a wall of bounty hunters behind me. Not my wall.. you can’t see my wall.. it’s much more diverse.

And Waayyy Cooler.
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