Rachel's Page
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History of Rachel's Page

In January 2000, when I was a wacky teenager, I started a website on About.com. I knew nothing about HTML at the time, so I used their very simplistic default layout. The color scheme was a black background with white text. The content was basically what most teenagers nowadays use their "blogs" for: whining about personal problems. I called it "Rachel's Page."

In Spring 2000, I learned about Homestead, which was a popular free hosting service at the time with a very detailed what-you-see-is-what-you-get editing program. It allowed me to be slightly more visually creative, with lots of images, and pastel blue text instead of white text. It was still called "Rachel's Page" for a while, but became "Rachel's Super Fun Magical Kingdom of Craptacular Splendor" at some point. I still used it to whine about my problems, though I also used it for opinion essays that I called editorials. Both of those fell into the a section of the main page that I'd labeled "Commentary." I also had a lot of other content, such as instructions on how to create me in Create-a-Character modes in wrestling videogames. At the same time, I used my old About.com space to attempt to start an online Pokedex, thinking none existed yet. But it didn't last very long, and About.com got rid of their hosting services in early 2001 anyway. (I don't know if they've since come back in some form.)

In Summer 2001, Homestead announced that they were canceling their free service, or at least the one that I used at the time, so I decided to finally teach myself HTML. I used Tripod as my host, where I began to recreate my layouts from scratch. I still kept the "Rachel's Super Fun Magical Kingdom of Craptacular Splendor" name, but also nicknamed it "the website about nothing." Some new content included a Magikarp shrine, and "Ma-jin Buu Spoilers," which were summaries of the final arc of the Dragon Ball manga done as a countdown to the premiere of that storyline on US television.

On November 4th, 2001, I grew tired and/or ashamed of my website and took down everything but the "Ma-jin Buu Spoilers." Shortly after this, however, I started an account on a blogging site called Diary-X.com. Here, I went back to using white text on the black background again, and I believe it had at least some HTML support. I used it regularly for a few months to comment or whine about various things. But one thing of note was that I used it to begin tracking the edits of the second dub season of Dragon Ball. This eventually led to me to want to create a "new" website.

On March 29th, 2002, I started "Dragon Ball Daisuki" on my Tripod space, which was meant to be focused entirely on Dragon Ball without the Z. I kept the white text on black background here. The cornerstones included redoing my Dragon Ball dub notes as detailed tape-to-tape comparisons, and much more organized manga summaries covering the beginning of the story until what corresponded to the start of the Z era in the anime, although I eventually decided to do the entire series. I stopped updating my Diary-X account and did not include any form of "commentary" anymore, personal or otherwise. On June 21st, 2002, I half-jokingly renamed the site "Notepad Daisuki." On September 12th, 2002, I inverted the site to a white background with black text.

In October 2002, I obtained my own slow yet (mostly) reliable web server and gradually stopped using Tripod. I also gradually gave up attempts at running an organized, named website and pretty much just slapped a bunch of different sections together. The Dragon Ball-related sections still made up the bulk of the content, and I completed both my edit list and manga summaries in early 2004. In Spring 2004, I began to convert most of the site to HTML 4.01 Strict and CSS, but I only finished about 90% of it. In Fall 2004, I attempted to start cleaning up my manga summaries, but I never finished that either, and eventually stopped updating most of the site entirely.

In June 2006, I began a script translation project for the Sailor Moon manga, which was also sparsely updated, but it marked my first foray into using XHTML 1.0 Strict. I intended to convert the rest of my site to these standards, but I never finished that, either.

At some point, probably in 2006-2007, I renamed the main page of the site to "Rachel's Page" out of nostalgia, but it was still very barren compared to the days of true layouts and lengthy personal commentary.

In Fall 2008, I decided that one of my resolutions for the new year would be to finally organize and clean up my entire website. On February 23rd, 2009, well into adulthood now, I began to make this reality by setting up a newer, better web server and transferring things over only as they're "ready." It was a lot more work than one might realize due to all the various things I've started over the years and the hundreds of HTML files I've created.

In Fall 2009, I came up with a new, primarily blue layout for the Dragon Ball content, and liked it enough that I planned to implement it throughout the entire site. Unfortunately, the end of 2009 came well before I'd accomplished that, or most of the other clean up work that I'd intended to.

January 2010 marked the site's tenth anniversary, which I chose to celebrate by creating a blog to function similarly to the old "commentaries." That blog marked the first public implementation of the aforementioned blue layout, but the actual site soon followed. I also began to experiment with RSS feeds on the main page at this point. My resolve to revamp the site had not wavered, and had in fact been strengthened by this ten year milestone.

In Fall 2010, I started using more advanced web technology, but it did little besides make things slightly easier behind the scenes. I chose to put off learning to make better use of it until content sections were finished.

So, here we are, and here's what we're going to do.