Cyber skeletons in cyber closets
When you’ve been online for as long as I have you’re bound to have some skeletons in your closet, and I thought it would be fun to show you one of mine.
My online life started in the 90′s, when I was still a kid. Our school got a bunch of computers and my interest was sparked. Then when my dad bought a computer to have at home I got seriously hooked.
For life as it turned out…
I fell in love with the Internet, and during my random surfing I discovered the world of “cyber pets”.
For the young folks who doesn’t remember I’m not talking about Neopets and the like. This was before that. I’m talking about a whole community of people making images of animals, real and fictional, some where pixelart and some were scanned drawings, and offering them out for “adoption”. These “adoptions” just meant you saved the image and uploaded it to your own site where you displayed all the pets you’ve collected. Kinda like the “toyboxes” that became popular later on.
Some of these adoption agencies had massive sites where they had built whole worlds around their pets. My favourite one was Skyhaven Adoptions (Omg, it’s actually still online!). I spent hours on that site as a kid, reading the stories and solving the puzzles.
So… when I started experimenting with making my own site I, of course, wanted to make cyberpets too.
I made a site (on Geocities if I remember correctly) and started creating these weird unicorn wolves with manes and a horn in their forehead:
I called them Unilupes and they were actually pretty popular. I had lots of visitors and comments and such.
Eventually I got bored with it and closed the site, but then this girl contacted me and wanted to take over. She asked me, very nicely, if she could use the lineart and make her own adoption agency with them.
I said sure and sent her everything she wanted.
Didn’t give it much thought after that, and I was sure that they had vanished from existence by now… but a few days ago I came across an old folder on my computer with some of my unilupes in it.
I googled “unilupes” just for the heck of it, not actually thinking anything would come up since it’s been almost 15 years, but there they were!
My own site isn’t available anymore but this is apparently the site that girl put up, in the credit text it still reads “drawn by Karin”, haha! And if you look at the search results you actually get a whole bunch of pages displaying their adopted unilupes.
God, those were the days…
I still have two pages on this site with “adopted” stuff. I know it’s silly, but whenever I go in to delete them I get all nostalgic and think “Aww, screw it. I’ll let them live for a while longer”.
What lurks in your Internet history? How did you start? What was your first site about?
I know at least some of the people reading this blog are “oldies” just like me and have been around long enough to remember a time before blogs and social networks. Spill!