I’ve been writing online for 10 years. Well, strictly speaking it’s longer than that because my Geocities site was last modified in 1997 and it’s still alive. I might yet import that site into this blog at some stage. Thankfully I had enough of HTML frames after that. I created a simple site on indigo.ie in late 1997 but then moved everything to http://members.xoom.com/xeer/ which later became members.nbci.com and is now long gone. xoom.com is now quite a different site!
I called the site DemoNix. It never had permalinks, but I did update it with a Perl script that built static html pages with a basic theme and then FTPed them to xoom.com. That script and the build files are long gone but thanks to the Wayback Machine I recovered a fair portion of it. All the original content I could scrape together is now in the Demonix category on this blog. I generally wrote about Linux demoscene news, code tutorials, gossip and my first 2 GPLed projects: “Time Sheets for Networks” and “Install Sendmail”. TSN as I fondly called it doesn’t exist any more but it was my 4th year college project. It was terrible. Buy me a pint some day and I’ll reveal just how bad it was. I wrote Install Sendmail because Sendmail was such a bitch to configure in those days. It was wildly popular, even being linked from the Fetchmail homepage. It still exists although the download link is now broken. It’s a sign of the times that nobody has complained about that.
Dave Polaschek recently reminded me that the web was a much smaller place back then. It was much easier to be noticed and get to the top of the pile if you posted consistently and well. My DemoNix site was read by many and even linked from a Slashdot story about Bladeenc in 1998. I’m sure it’s a simple coincidence that members.xoom.com went offline around the same time for a day or so ..
I could write more, but it’s all contained in the archives of this site. Everything from enthusiastic exclamations about the latest demos or code snippets to the short announcement of my mother’s death in December 1998. I still remember the email Mark sent me after I made that post. There were no comments in those days.
As this is a self indulgent look into the past, grab a Commodore 64 emulator and download donnchac64.zip. It’s a collection of demos and bits and bobs I wrote (or co-wrote) on that machine from early 1992 to late 1993.
Emulating a Commodore 64 is not without it’s problems. “Awareness of Reality” doesn’t seem to load properly in Vice. The speed loader I used doesn’t like the emulator and I have yet to figure out what the “left arrow key” is on a PC keyboard. That key is used in AOR and “Ionsai on Gealach”, my award winning Galaxians mod! It’s great to hear those old tunes again though.
10 years down, many more to come I hope. I’m now a dad, married to my beautiful Jacinta and work at the cutting edge of blogging with the WordPress folks. Great times.