A Blast From The Past

I had the oddest experience earlier this week.  I was in need of some short-term offline data storage, and the first thing to which I laid my hand was a dusty old CD-RW that I hadn't seen for many years prior to the house move.  Before adding new content to it, I thought I'd check what files it already contained, and was surprised to find a backup of my website from spring 1999!

Back in 1999 my site contained a somewhat navel-gazing daily journal in which I generally bitched about my boring job (I was a lowly recent graduate working as a mainframe Assembler programmer in a soulless bank), and at one point even wrote about the job interviews I had been attending.  It was perfectly feasible to do so as very few people outside my immediate circle of friends actually read the thing!  To put this in context, mine was one of around 500 sites listed on the "Open Pages" directory of online diaries at that time, and even got a mention in a Discovery Channel article on the subject.

There was, you won't be surprised to hear, little in the way of technical content on the site at that time, although I did publish a few small VB5 apps I wrote, including a Noughts and Crosses game and an application called "Motivation" which sat on the taskbar and displayed the amount of salary accumulated so far that day.  I'm delighted to see that they all work fine under XP Pro, which is probably more testament to Microsoft's dedication to backwards-compatibility than my coding skills (I haven't dared view the source code, which I also find on the CD-RW).  In retrospect I don't know why I didn't blog, er, I mean write about some of the JavaScript techniques I was using to power the site, as they seem quite clever now - I've long since forgotten most of that client-side programming knowledge.

Two years later, in 2001, I'd left that job, bought my own home, and was sat in an auditorium in the Hilton, London, listening to Bill Gates give a keynote speech at the launch of Visual Studio .NET.  It really was like the difference between night and day, and reading those old entries brings back the feeling of how incredibly bored I was in my day job.

Still, I made up for it at the weekends with lots of short trips up to Scotland for munro-bagging and heavy-drinking.  This was back when I and all my friends were still single, and still had the energy for such excursions!

I'm toying with the idea of posting the old entries on this site.  Do you think I should?  Most of the links won't work any longer, and I wrote at length about TV shows and bands which have long since slipped into obscurity, but there may be some value in some of the material, at least from a nostalgic perspective.  But then on the other hand, do I really want to re-publish entries in which I sound like, well, a bit of a twat?