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Site History

This is an example of the Site History page from the old owenrudge.net design. To return to the present design, click here.

owenrudge.net has been through a number of changes. This page lists some of them.

In the beginning... (November 1999)

At first, neither owenrudge.net nor owenrudge.co.uk didn't exist. It was the Visual Basic Workshop, a few pages I'd knocked together after thinking I might like a web site.

Here is one of the oldest pages I have (please note that the links may not work) - the Information/Feedback page from the original site design (I've discovered some even older pages, probably from when I converted the site to use drop-down menus).

Drop-down menus

A month or so after I put the Visual Basic Workshop online, I worked on creating the drop-down menu routines that were present until the owenrudge.net rebrand. They were Internet Explorer-only for some time, until I recreated the routines (the old routines had a black menu, the new routines had blue menus). You can see the old drop-down menus on the old page above.

Utility Base and OSPlus

I think the Utility Base came next, and then OSPlus. (Actually, looking at some older files, I think it may have been the other way round). We are still working with the old look.

The New Look (January/February 2000)

Then it was time for a complete overhaul. The interface was made slicker and easier to use. Click here to see a page from the new design.

Other Changes

Since then, around March 6th 2000 I think, I've added the GEM pages. In May 2000, the site became owenrudge.co.uk, as the site began to cover topics other than just Visual Basic. The Transport Tycoon Station the next addition, back in August 2000. Since then, the site has been growing and growing, and improving too. From a mere 200KB back in November 1999, the site has grown to be a pretty huge resource for a variety of computing subjects. Seven days away from the site's first birthday, in November 2000, the site was exactly 11MB, there were 421 files, and there were three domain names: www.owenrudge.co.uk, www.owenrudge.com and www.osplus.co.uk. [As of 01/05/04, only osplus.co.uk works: I'm trying to get owenrudge.co.uk back].

Server move, start of the PHP era (late 2000)

I then moved owenrudge.co.uk to a different server, and completely changed the "technical" side of things. I converted the site to use the PHP system, which made the site much easier for me to manage.

10,000 hits and a new menu system (25th February 2001)

As I wrote this, I was very close to having 10,000 hits, and I had just finished writing and testing a new menu system. This looked better than the old, black menu system that I wrote in December 1999/Jan 2000, it didn't use any VBScript (I never really liked having VBScript on my pages), it was much easier to manage, and it contained pretty much the entire site listing.

10,000 hits! Bah! (30th July 2001)

A while on, and the hit count had doubled. The new menu system worked under Netscape 6/Mozilla, so finally, it was now pretty much cross-browser compatible. One of the major new things that happened back in mid-2001 was the creation of a new sub-site, The Ultimate Transport Tycoon Game Repository, which was completely database-driven and contained over 250 TT saved games and scenarios. I also added an Age of Empires section to the site, and sometime later the FreeDOS section too. Doing a quick "right-click, Properties" on my web site folder revealed that there are 1,059 files (note, however, that this included a number of "back-end" files - at least one for each page) taking up 14.9MB. There were also 6 domains - www.owenrudge.co.uk, www.owenrudge.com, www.osplus.co.uk, www.transporttycoon.uk.tt, www.savedgamemanager.uk.tt and www.gamearchive.uk.tt.

The Empire Expands... (2nd August 2001)

In August 2001, I took over a site called DesktopShots, a site full of people's desktop screenshots. This once again marked the expansion of the site, something which continued over the next couple of years.

First mention of owenrudge.net (October 2002)

On the 2nd October 2002, I made a news item that was the first mention of the owenrudge.co.uk to owenrudge.net rebrand. The first signs of the site changing into owenrudge.net involved the migration of the downloads to a new download system I had created. In May 2003, I moved the whole site to owenrudge.net, although still branded as owenrudge.co.uk.

Owen's Transport Tycoon Station: The New Look (18th October 2003)

In October 2003, I launched the new Transport Tycoon Station, after I took over Adam Trevorrow's Transport Tycoon Depository. The TT Station became separated from owenrudge.net, with its own design.

The new design of owenrudge.net (1st May 2004)

I spent many months migrating all the content from owenrudge.co.uk, cleaning up the HTML, and updating some of the content. Finally, on the 1st May 2004, the new site was uploaded and released to the masses!



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