I’ve come to realize that many times someone in my family has nearly killed me. I’ve had numerous brushes with Death. The Grim Reaper and I are on a first-name basis. Here are the list of things that nearly killed me in chronological order:
<5 years old – Mom sets me down next to the stove to get something out of the pantry, and I put my hands on the one burner that was on high.
<5 years old – Uncle swings me around, loses his grip, and my head goes through the wall.
<5 years old – Dad’s friend tosses me into a pool thinking I can swim. Dad and said friend had to dive in to keep me from drowning.
<5 years old – Trying to jump on my dad’s waterbed makes me lose my balance and land on the wooden edge, cracking my skull in half. Took numerous stitches to keep my brain from spilling out.
12 years old – Drunk stepfather dangles me over the balcony of the 2nd story apartments, holding me with one hand on my ankle, as a joke.
17 years old – Dad gets drunk and passes out. All 4 burners on the stove were on high which sets the kitchen on fire, and the smoke detector doesn’t work. Setting my alarm to go off at 4 in the morning to play Quake 1 on the computer saved us.
It was more a “put your toe in the water” kind of thing for me with Designtopia.net. Designtopia was supposed to be an easy way for me to freelance my web design skills to anyone that needed my services, but it turned out to be more of a headache than a financial relief.
Trying to design websites for people is like pulling teeth, it makes you stupid after a while. One guy wanted blinking letters that scroll from right to the left of the browser, another wanted a bunch of Under Construction graphics ala 1994 on pages he wanted me to put up, but not have any information on. Another one wanted to use specific colors that looked so horrible, it gave me an eyesore just looking at it.
A lot of these people didn’t want my advice, my expertise, my skills, they wanted to control me like a puppet and treat me like I’m merely an extension of their superior web design skills that doesn’t exist. They didn’t care about accessibility, usability guidelines, or proper semantics. One guy even wanted me to spam his website to millions of emails from an email list that he purchased for “an amazingly low price of $500.” The vast majority won’t communicate with you, and don’t even have enough content to fill a website with useful information. For every serious client that had a plan, asked for my advice, and let me do what I do best, there were 20 more that wasted your time.
I made a post over at 3DGPU.com � Firefox 1.0 Launch Day with details about the public final release of Firefox 1.0. The post includes resources you may find useful, tips and tricks, and local download mirrors in case the official site is swamped. Firefox is the browser to use if you want a great experience browsing the internet.