Back in the early 90’s when I was in the U.S. Navy and stationed in Virginia Beach, Va. I purchased my very first computer from one of the guys in my squadron. It was a 286, with 1 mg of RAM and a 40 mg harddrive. I didn’t do much with it at first, mainly typed a few letters using the dot-matrix printer to print them and playing the DOS driven games. It wasn’t until I transferred from the squadron to base supply that I met a guy that asked if my computer had a modem. Modem? What is that? While moving my computer from one place to another I noticed the phone jacks in the back. I went out and purchased a 25’ phone cord, plug the cord in the jack, ran the cord into the closet, up and over the door jam then back out to the computer. I plugged the other end of the cord into the computer. Using a Prodigy installation CD-Rom within minutes I was connected to the Internet. I can still remember my very first email address at Prodigy.
My new friend at base supply gave me a floppy disk with a program on it called Telix and showed me how to log in into Bulletin Board Systems (BBS), a way of connecting to other computers. I was a member of a few BBS’s there in Virginia Beach. I went by the nickname of ‘Parrothead’ because I was a big Jimmy Buffett fan. Then AOL and Compuserve came along. With AOL you were able to create a homepage and from then on I was hooked.
While stationed in Maine I learned how to connect to the Internet using an ISP or Internet Service Provider instead of using AOL. It was then I learn how to start creating web pages and loading them up via FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
I did my first web pages by just using HTML code and using NotePad. Trial and error. I would see something I didn’t like, change it in NotePad then load it up FTP and hit refresh. Then I got a program called FrontPage and was able to be more creative.
I used FrontPage for a long time and it was a great program. However, web standards have changed over the years and the current FrontPage I was using didn’t adhere to the new standards.
In 2008 I was let go by the company I had worked for. For 6 months I sat around thinking of what to do. Then it hit me. Go to college. I used the GI Bill and in May of 2010 graduated with an AS degree in Web Page Design.
Today I use various programs to create web pages and web sites. My specialty is taking existing web sites and giving them an overhaul and making them web compliant as well giving the new website better functionality. I also will teach on how to manage and maintain the website so that you have control.