How'd You Get To Be A WebMaster?

Now that I have this website up, and I'm becoming internationally known for my wit and charm, I am quite frequently asked, (well I've maybe been asked once or twice anyhow)  "How did you get to be a webmaster?"

Most ask me that because they truly don't think I'm smart enough to have pulled this shit off by myself! Other's because they don't know me well enough, to know I'm not! Some because they are genuinely interested in how one does become such. And, still others because they are truly mystified by the web experience, and wonder how one designs something like this, exports it to a server 2000 miles away, and makes it pop up on their neighbor's monitor next door 2 minutes after it leaves here.

Well to answer all those questions in inverted order!

Beats the hell out of me! ~ I have no clue how you can send something that far away and see it so fast, right next door! It amazes the living suuuugar out me too folks! I guess that's one of the reasons I play with web work, it is truly fascinating, and it seems at times that there is no end to what you can do.

It is not however rocket science, it's all pretty simple until you get into writing Java, Flash, XML and a few other more intense design languages. There really isn't allot to your basic HTML page package, and just about anyone could understand it with a few hours of class time. It's basically just a few tags and a bunch of text and picture files arranged in a text file. Figuring it all out is really pretty simple. Front Page simplifies it further, but...... you do need to know enough HTML to figure out what's causing problems, too know how to fix them, because Front Page is far from fool proof. And, it's supposed to be one of the better HTML Editors folks.

As for me being smart enough! Well............................. we won't go there. My mental fortitude, is quite comparable to the page design before you, which was created in Front Page. Front Page runs a WYSIWIG design format. For those of you not familiar with design terminology, that are all sitting there thinking that ~ WYSIWIG ~ is something truly complex and/or mystifying. That interesting little acronym that appears so intimidating, stands for "What You See Is What You Get!"

How I got to be a webmaster was.... I was headed into a very large construction project at work, and I told the Board, "Guys, I have connections, we can put up a website pretty cheap, it would be easy to access, easy to drop the address on folks who want more information about the project, it would get the same story out every time, get news on the project out easily and cheaply, and that would go a long way toward advertising for us." They thought about it, asked what it would cost, and I told them I'd look into it. I called to inquire. (The infamous Joe Cullum down in Norman, OK at WebSymmetry.) He gave me the scoop on what it was all going to run, and we hired him to build the site. Being the persnickety soul I am, there where things I found wrong that I just had to fix. So I asked Joe, "how do I fix this shit dude?"

Well Joe questioned what software I had on board my computer, and we arrived at note-pad being the only HTML editing tool I truly had at that time. He helped me downloaded a basic FTP program and get it all set up to download and upload the goodies to the site, I downloaded the site, and we were off and running. Thereafter Joe sorta coached me through a few hurdles in correcting problems, sent me a few website addresses for HTML help, and more or less made me HTML literate, in short order. From there he pointed me to MSE, (that's Microsoft Script Editor for those of you scratching your head thinking this is getting  complex again, which is in fact very likely on your computer because it's buried in a great many MS Office products.)

I must tell you folks, that MSE went way over my head! The program is an awesome script editing tool, however it is way intense for the newbie to web work, and not real user friendly toward such. So I went to Bruce up at the Computer Store and inquired as to what he recommended. Bruce turned me on to Front Page, which I found to be pretty user friendly. Hell, I didn't even have to read the instructions and I had it up and going, (couldn't make it do a damned thing until I read them, but I had it up and going anyhow)! Along about then I had a computer given to me for use on the home front, and I started playing with the site a little at home as well. I loaded Front Page on the home computer and started trying to learn the ropes. About 20 minutes into it I sat down and read the instruction manual to figure out a problem or two, (like how to create a page) which that was pretty simple after reading the instructions! I built a considerable portion of the RTFI website as a tutorial project simply to learn Front Page, and the site before you was not finished for a long, long time. (Still isn't! It probably never will be either!) It was, as you may have already gathered, or you might have even been here that long ago and remember, loaded to a free server on Tripod, just to have it out there to play with and learn Front Page. That is all it was supposed to be!

I then had a problem or two with the site and inquired of Joe seeking answers. Joe was kind enough to help me out, and looked the site over to see how I'd done with my little project. Joe found the site pretty interesting for a rookie web designer. Enough so that he loaded the project unfinished to his brother Don's TL Businesses Page and they told me about it after the fact!

As stated it sat there unfinished for a long time, as I had my hands full at work, until Chewy came along, (see Chewy's Law), and disrupted my belief's that the link was being more or less ignored by the world. Not having a counter on it, I had no clue what kind of traffic it was seeing, and I really didn't figure it was doing anything. Chewy e-mailed one day, and commented favorably on the site, next thing I know he was spreading the word to everyone! I stopped in on the Tripod server one day, and checked the stats and there was considerable traffic there folks! I was amazed.

With that little finding, I figured I should maybe get my act together and finish this thing up! In the process however, I got thoroughly disgusted in having to contend with the banner ads on the Tripod server screwing up my diligent efforts in design, and moved the site to it's new location to get away from those. Shortly thereafter I became unemployed and had a whole lot of time on my hands, and I used the site as a therapeutic tool to take out my frustration; it was an outlet for much pent up stress, and thus it got a major face lift!

And, that's pretty much all there was too it. There was no schooling, or at least not yet anyhow, it just sorta happened, I have however been considering it as a career. I've tried to find others to let me build a site for them, but it seems everyone I talk too just had one built, can't find the time to get their goodies together and back to me, or I'm not salesman enough to get them truly fired up. One of these days, I'll get it all figured out and find work at this profession. Until then I'll remain master of my own little web, and keep on writing about fishing and fun times on the water, for all my loyal fans.

Thanks for visiting, your attendance means a lot!   ~ ~ ~   The Webmaster <{{{><




Index Page  |  Homepage  |  Dakota SEO & Design  |  Recipe Book  |  Links