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If you don't already know, this was the first site, I've ever made. Back in December of 1998 I got courious about webdesign. A friend helped me sign up with Geocities. I had no idea what to call myself, so I became the "Silver Baboon". After a bit thinking, I decided that "Silver Huskey" was better suited for a Balto site.
Back in 1998, I didn't own a computer, so everything was done from school computers. But in the summer of 1999, I got my own computer. As well as a few graphics, and webdesign programs.
My page first started out with only a blue background, two links, and a Geocities counter. After a while I went to other Balto sites and borrowed some of there images. I was having problems uploading files, so I simply linked, or leeched them. Unfortunatly thoses sites got deleted, so I learned a hard lesson. I learned that it is better to upload images to your own site. I also learned the meaning of extentsion names, such as .gif, .jpg, and .html.
Later I decided to join the Balto Webring, I had a bit of trouble getting started, but Busara helped me out. Then I went looking for a Balto Club to join at Yahoo!. Sadly I could find none. So I decided to make my own Balto Club, I couldn't think of a name right away. So later as I sat playing Pokémon on Game Boy, the name League came to me. So I decided to call my Club the Balto League, 'cause it sounded cool. So for the first couple of months there only 3 members in the club, including me. Later as the months went by more and more people joined.
All was seeming well, until I noticed my site was getting an awful lot of hate mail. People wanted to know why my site wasn't an Resident Evil site. So they basically told me to go to hell, that's a mild way of putting it. It turns out that the page I signed up for, used to be a Resident Evil page. Who ever maintained the space, must have given up on the site. But he had listed himself in Yahoo!. SO that's how people where finding my site. They wanted game cheats not a site about Balto. So the hate mail never stopped. I even thought about shutting this site down.
In my darkest times, I noticed that people started to come to my defense. People sent me encouraging e-mails, and told me not to give in. They even signed my Guestbook, with Anti-hate messages. Then other Balto sites began to get involved. Silver Wolf started a "Leave Balto Alone" campain, and even made a banner. Others Balto site owners such as Snow Wolf, even joined in to help me. As more time went by, the hate mail subsided.
Later as the site's popularity grew, I decided that a new layout was need. So I decided to use tables. Similar to the ones that are now on Silver Wolf's Balto Page. The layout looked a lot neater, but it was harder to maintain.
As time went on, I turned my attentions to Pokémon. But it gave me some wonderful ideas, such as the Adopt-A-Character Page. But I didn't updated nearly as much as I used to.
In June of 1999 Geocities merged with Yahoo!. After the huge merger, all was once again not well. It turns out that Yahoo! Geocities now could claim whatever they wanted to on a members site. So I decided it was time to pack my bags and go. I began looking for a good host, then someone mentioned Crosswinds.net. They seemed to be okay, but it was their promise of unlimited space that caught my attention. But I soon discovered that compared to Geocities, Crosswinds was a nofills kind of provider. But I managed to upload my whole site. I had lots of problems but I managed to get through them.
Later as the months went by I decided another layout date was nessary. So I used side tables, which didn't look too bad. I also downloaded a demo verison of Paint Shop Pro, and created a new header.
-New Layout: Page 1
-New Layout: Page 2
-New Layout: Page 3
Later I decided to move on, and make a full Pokémon, site so I left my Balto site, for good couple of months. Later as my Pokémon site grew in popularity, I realized that all of this wouldn't have been possible, if I hadn't of cared about Balto. So I decided to give the site the updating that it deserved. I had learned a lot of tricks from my Pokémon site, so I decided to apply them to Balto. The results were my 3rd layout, which combined side tables, with drop down menus.
Through all of this the Balto League was also growing at fast rate. The club now had over 40 members, and some of the most active members organized the club the most. Everyone decided that the club should have chats on Saturdays. I noticed that the Balto League was getting more page views than any other Balto site (about 200 a day!). So I decided to team up with other Balto Webmasters and create the Balto League home page. Unfortunatly that project never really got started, and has no real plans for the future... However it was a nice idea!
After a bit of thinking I decided that Silver Huskey's Balto page was a very unoriginal title. So I decided to rename the whole site "The Ice Cave". After the icy cave in the movie which Balto ran into to save the sled team from disater.
Around November 27, 2000 I decided to completely change the
layout of the site. I was tired of the old (2) layout, and I wanted something
very professional looking. So I used a free layout from undersun.net, and made it to my liking.
However I didn't like the idea of borrowed layout, and as the months went by I decided wether or not to scrap the Undersun layout,02,03 or not. After much deliberation I came to a decision, and on Friday, August 3, 2001, I designed a new layout. This new layout isn't drastically different in appearance. I worked so hard on the graphics, I saw no reason to change them.
But in comparision, the HTML code to implement the current layout was drastically different. I decided to switch the site from over from regular HTML to SHTML, which now allowed me to use SSI (Server Sides Includes). Who ever invented this code was genius! Using a small code inserted on every HTML page I could update every page (the tables mainly) by just changing one or two files instead of 30 or so. But in order to use SSI, I had to change all of the page extentions from .html to .shtml.
Hopefully I'll keep this current layout much longer than the others...
"Or maybe your tastes run more towards- WOLF"-Steele