We are a middle-aged couple who live in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. We have a great time together doing interesting things, or at least things we think are interesting. They may be dead boring to other people.
This website first appeared on GeoCities in early 2001. We started it because we wanted to have a place to post photos for friends and relatives, rather than e-mailing large files around to them.
Fairly quickly we added recipes that we found, modified, invented or got from friends. We started a jokes page as a place to post all those forwarded jokes that everyone gets, or at least what we thought were the best ones. We also added a page for some of Ruth's paintings and animations. We also have a permanent collection of photos. More recently we added our free books, please feel free to download them!
Aside from those more permanent items, we also post pages on recent things that we have done, holidays, trips and such. These are all linked from the home page. We also use the home page as a collection of links to friends' websites, other websites we have created, interesting websites that we like and free software websites, too.
When we started this website in 2001 we didn't know much about creating websites, but we have learned along the way. Most of the time our website has served as a learning "testbed" for web techniques. That may account for the rather "experimental" look to it at times. It changes a lot and we regularly add things to it.
When we started out, it was written on MS Publisher 97. Yes, believe it or not you could create web pages on that old application! Over time different versions of this website and our other websites have been written on Publisher 2000, MS Word 2000, MS FrontPage 2002, MacroMedia DreamWeaver, Mozilla SeaMonkey, NVu and KompoZer. Whew!
Today this website is entirely coded in XHTML by hand on the Ubuntu operating system, using the gEdit text editor. Writing XHTML by hand is so easy, fun and gives so much control, that we wouldn't use anything else.
This website was located on GeoCities from April 2001-December 2007. On 13 December 2007 we moved it to our new ISP, National Capital Freenet.
In April 2008 we moved three more of our websites to NCF. These are:
Over the years we have had a lot of involvement with computers. Adam started working on an IBM mainframe in 1978. Some of the programming was run on cards back then! Later in the 1980s he worked on a DEC mainframe and even had e-mail in 1988.
Ruth's first computer was a Commodore 64. She later had an Amiga, before moving onto Windows 2.0.
Operating systems we have used together:
We have also tested every version of Puppy Linux starting with Puppy 4.3.1 and have used it for hardware testing.
We haven't used Windows since 2008 as it is insecure, expensive and compromises your personal freedom, Apple on the other hand is relatively secure but very expensive and compromises your personal freedom. Instead we use free software Linux-based operating systems. For details see our Ubuntu Diaries.
We have a few small computer projects on the go these days. These each have their own diary pages that describe them in detail:
I should add one more note on the subject of websites and the internet in general.
Overall I think that the internet has a problem - too much "glitz and technique" and not enough useful content. There is a tendency to post anything, regardless of the quality, since it is easy to do. Flash-based websites are probably the worst.
I really believe that no matter what technology you are using to create web pages (especially if you are amusing yourself hand-coding pages like I am) webmasters have to remember: The internet should not be about the "technology", it should be about "content". The technical aspects are just a means to get the content read. If the technology detracts from the message or the information, then it doesn't work. The worse case is where a website has no real content and all you get are animated GIFs and useless Flash animations instead of actual information.
This website is just our own personal stuff, but we try to make sure that the writing is clear, the recipes tasty and the jokes funny. Even "personal media" like this ought to be worth reading.
I hope that we have met our own standard here.
Here is just a list, in alphabetical order, of some things that we like, do, or generally support:
This web-page is licensed under a Creative Commons Licence.