The webcomic XKCD is paying tribute to Geocities today with its, er, “old-school” (crappy Geocities-esque) homepage. For those who may not have joined the once cutting-edge service (A web-based WYSIWYG editor! In 1995!), you may not know that today is the day that owner Yahoo! shuts the site down for good.
XKCD’s parody/tribute is pretty spot/on, with webrings, BLINK tags, “Cool Site Award” badges and a gratuitous use of Comic Sans. This, people, is what the personal Internet looked like 15 years ago. To make anything even remotely good-looking, you had to know HTML, FTP, maybe a little PSP for creating your sweet tiling background images.
Then along came Blogger and WordPress and Xanga and Vox and LiveJournal and suddenly all you needed to do was TYPE THINGS INTO A BOX and it would become A BLOG POST ON YOUR WEB SITE. Holy crap.
So now thousands of people are using the default templates that come with Blogspot or whatever but have we lost something now that everyone’s site looks like this?
Maybe, but the Web wasn’t really “Democratized” until publishing became easy enough for the masses. Geocities was a great step for nerds like us (EnchantedForest/Dell/2667) but we’re happy that you can now visit someone’s professional home on the Web without being assaulted by eyesores.
So, thanks Geocities for kicking off the revolution, but your time really has passed. Good riddance.
(Hat tip to Mashable! for bringing this to our attention.)