My first website was set up in 2001 with no real objective in mind except to learn a bit of HTML and have some fun. At the time I was editing a magazine called It's on the Net, and I thought I ought to find out more about how websites were constructed.
That first site, at www.andrewnoakes.co.uk (now defunct), had no more than a handful of very simple pages, all of them hand-coded.
The first attempt at a serious website for me and my partner, wine writer Paula Goddard, appeared at www.pgan.com in August 2002 (above). Again the pages were coded by hand, and I was running an Apache web server on my Mac to host a local version of the site where I could test the code before uploading pages to the live site.
The first version of andrewnoakes.com was hand-coded, this time using the excellent freeware Taco HTML editor and adhering to the HTML4 standard, using HTML tables to control layout. It was written largely on a pair of Apple Macs - an eMac G4/700 running Mac OS X 10.2.8 'Jaguar' and a very old Powerbook 1400c/117 running Mac OS 8.6.
All the pages were converted to use XHTML1.0 and CSS for layout, but without making any major visual changes. The XHTML/CSS pages were far easier to code than equivalent HTML pages using tables, and proved to be typically 30% smaller giving an improvement in download times.
To retain the existing page design I took a long look at how the standard Joomla! templates were put together and then created a new template based on the old site. The result was a site which looked very similar to the previous incarnation, but which was much simpler and quicker to add to and update.
By 2009, the site had been developed with a new template and new sections, including links to Twitter and other social media, but the fundamentals remained the same.
In 2012 the design was updated taking advantage of modern browser features such as transparency and web fonts, and more content added about the work I do. The site was still powered by the Joomla content management system.
The Joomla content management system still underpinned the site in 2014 but the design was all-new, with bigger images and parallax scrolling effects.