BTW I have nicknamed Martijn "The One" from a long time ago playing some silly offroad game with him and Stan the biker online. I think it's a fitting nickname...
Snow-b@#$h wrote:Well, I 've got a nice run down of the mailing list history on my computer at home, I'll have to cut n paste that into her sometime too.
It all started with two guys near and dear to me (I've never met them either ) Crazy Karl (no not Slug) and Spleenboy. They were yzf600r riders who participated on the mailing list. Spleenboy was in a bike accident many years ago and lost his spleen (hence the nickname) and started a small website www.yzf600r-usa.com and posted the url on the mailing list. This was around late 1998 or mid 1999, I forget. Spleenboy, whose name was actually Scott ended up selling his beloved Cat and moved on to something else. Just before that, he posted on the mailing list that he was thinking of giving up the site and moving on and wondered if anyone wanted to take over. I thought about it for a sleepless night (made myself sick over it) before I spoke up. Back then I knew how to navigate the web, check my email and NOTHING else. Literally NOTHING. I didn't know what HTML was or what a .jpg was or anything. Uploading,downloading, firewalls, etc.... I had no clue.
After I spoke up and said I'd take over I found out they were kind of hoping I would take the bait. At that time, the webiste was about 8 pages long and the forums were hosted on ezboard.com There were about 20 members or so and about 10-12 posts a month. The mailing list was huge then and getting about 100+ emails a day and hovering around 150 members.
I bought website building books and still remember the day Karl emailed me the passwords and logins and they mailed me the files on CD including a program I had never heard of back then (Dreamweaver) to work on the site. I sat there for hours and hours, trying this and that and seeing what worked and what didn't. It was frustrating and exciting at the same time. I learned how to register a url, how to upload and download, I figured out what the heck a .html file was! I learned if you make a homepage and call it homepage.html and upload it, it won't work unless you call it index.html!! I started over at square one literally and learned as I went. It was painful but fun, at lot of fun.
As time went on I added to the site, tried to gather more information and began to mention the site more often on the mailing list, especially the forums. The forums grew slowly and posts went up and up. The ezboard.com people offered webspace for free but they had ads. No big deal... at first. As member numbers increased and hits went up, the ads got crazy. Everytime a page opened about 6 pop ups would hit you everytime. Posts began to plumment and people where emailing me saying it was a problem and they were leaving. So I looked into paying to keep the ads away. It was cheap at first but it got crazy too and I felt uncomfortable asking members for money to keep us ad free. Slug told be about the program we use now phpBB which was free but another thing I had never tried before. What is a .tpl file? Huh? What about the 1000s of posts at ezboard? What about post counts? Can I transfer them over? Yes but it wasn't easy. But with lots of help, we got it done.
In between all of this I was hit by a large truck and left for dead on the side of a road (I've posted that story) but it was this very website that gave me something to stay involved in the sport and really kept me going. The "members" became "friends" and I got a ton of support. Where I lacked on website prowess, some members excelled, like Martijn who showed me what a template was and sent me hours upon hours of files he worked hard on to make the website look as good as it does now (but never asking for acknowledgement of it). I also used the forums to ask people what they wanted to see in a website, more links and pictures of other peoples bikes where tops. So I opened the Garage section which only had two bikes in it (Krazy Karl and Spleenboys) and started a Links section. Then a member over in the UK, Jacob, closed down his site and sent me 100s of his links to add in too. Now I think we got one of the best Links pages on the net! Martijn also worked his magic on the layout there too with the Cat and it's clickable parts.
This kinda leads us to now really. For those of you still reading, thanks. I'm at work right now and this is even a slightly jumbled up and shortened version but it gives you all an idea of where it came from.
I can only hope and pray it keeps getting bigger and members still come to stay even after they've long gotten rid of their Cats. This place has really helped me over the years and I hope it stays around for a very long time.
01YZF6 wrote:I am voting this to be placed into the "BEST OF" category topic!
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