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How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2016 9:01 pm
by RelentlessChaos
[TOPIC AUTO-LOCKED DUE TO INACTIVITY]

Just curious.

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:52 am
by beardie
We're now about 16.5 years old as of this post. I first launched the site in March of 2000.

So, a bit of history, if you're interested in knowing more...

At first, it was only a way for me to post pictures and my own experiences with my beardies. I was on a couple other forums (Yahoo Groups) at the time, but wished there were more pictures and articles. So, I wrote what I felt I could speak to as someone very new to beardies. I wrote about how to sex your bearded dragon, about the basic behaviors, etc. Then I added polls for visitors to chime in on their thoughts. Then someone suggested I add forums. At first, I was trying to research and answer anyone's questions. Then we had enough regular visitors that they were helping too.

Back then, the website was running off of an old computer I had and over a DSL modem line. I believe it was around 2004 that I moved the site to a hosted service. And year after year we grew until I had to have a dedicated server for the site (upgraded 1-2 times too). And at the beginning of this year, I switched over to Amazon cloud, as our traffic has been a bit less, but still more than enough to need a dedicated environment. The latest change will give flexibility to adjust server power and cost as we grow or shrink.

I think the forums started in 2001 or so. Our peak in visitors and activity on the community was probably around 2007-2008, before Social Media sites stole everyone's online time and people shifted away from forum communities a bit. But even today, we're still one of the most active sites focused on bearded dragon discussions. We lost our higher Google ranking for some reason (sadly a site that was using other people's content somehow got in the upper top spots where we were), but we're usually in the top 10 on Google searches for "bearded dragon". I haven't had the time to work on fresh and regular content, unfortunately, which is the best way to improve our Google ranking.

Hope that was what you were looking for. :)

Oh, and the WayBack Machine (a web archiving project) started recording the site in December of 2000... so you can see what it looked like WAAAY back then...

http://web.archive.org/web/200012062206 ... ragon.org/

And to browse it over other times...
http://web.archive.org/web/200010010000 ... dragon.org

Cheers,
-Alex

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:55 am
by RelentlessChaos
Definitely the answer I was looking for, thank you.

Very interesting history lesson!

Should probably sticky or include in an about us section :lol:

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2016 12:40 pm
by beardie
Good idea. :)

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:09 pm
by diamc
That was very informative Alex, thanks for sharing it. You have worked hard and it has paid off. :) I know I have seen a lot of your accomplishments since I joined in 2004. :D

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:07 pm
by Rankins
I was on a bearded dragon email forum in 1990....might have been the yahoo group Alex mentioned. It eventually got so large I couldn't handle the 40-50 emails a day.
This is much better!

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:05 am
by beardie
1990? What sort of forum was this? There was no web (aka World Wide Web) back then. 1990 is even before I was on the Internet. Back then it was gopher (text base document/media sharing; like the web but text only) or usenet groups. The latter was the main forum of forum communities, though. Most of those old usenet groups were bought by Google and you can still search old content even.

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!overview

Search for an old handle or email address you may have used and you can find some old stuff. I found some of my earlier posts from 1992 and 1993 (when I first got "online" back in college).

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 2:49 pm
by Rankins
I'm pretty sure it was 1990, that was around the time I got my original group of BD. It may have been a tad bit later than that...but I don't believe it was much later. I believe I was in nursing school prior to joining and I graduated in 1992. But it was a long time ago and may have the year wrong.
It was an email group, we did not have any handlers names. It was our own names and email addresses. Kathryn Tosney was on the same list.
I was on an uromastyx group just like it, but that was around 1996.

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 7:48 am
by beardie
Was it a web-based forum? Keep in mind the Internet wasn't publicly accessible until 1994 (really 1995). Prior to that it would have been purely academia or government people. Web pages weren't really around to any real amount until 1995-1996, and were very basic at the time. I don't think there were many web based forums, although some may have started to make the usenet groups accessible via the web.

It's very possible that you were using a program to access usenet. Those were the main forums of the day. I remember far too many hours browsing and engaging in discussions on it. :) That and IRC.

I kinda miss the simpler days of the Internet... the 90's were a fun time for those paying attention to the advancements and new possibilities.

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 7:52 am
by beardie
Oh... i Just realized you said "email group". I completely forgot about those too. LOL I am on many now, but almost don't even see that as "a thing". So used to them these days. :)

Email lists makes sense. Those were also incredibly common. I think that's what Yahoo groups actually was, but where the archive was web accessible, and likely posting was even email driven with a Yahoo account.

Re: How old is BeardedDragon.org?

PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 4:51 pm
by Rankins
Yes, it was an emailing list. At the time most of the people on the list were academic folks. Later the list got cluttered up with way too many people and I unsubscribed.
The uromastyx group worked exactly the same way.