September, 2001

Shakespeare Resource Center screen shot from September, 2001

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Like I said before, in the time since I started doing the Shakespeare Resource Center, I've picked up a few tricks here and there. For one thing, I wanted to optimize the pages to take advantage of things like page includes for running headers, footers, and the navigation throughout the site. It's an immense improvement to be able to make one change and have it take effect across the site. Along the same lines, I was finally able to totally incorporate a style sheet with this design. If I ever get tired of Verdana font, I can change a couple of lines of code in a remote file and have it applied immediately on every page. For those of you that have maintained a site of your own, you know the pain of hunting down stray <FONT> tags on a page-by-page basis.

Essentially the site update this time around was a pain in the neck, but it was done so that going forward, the site updates would be a heck of a lot easier. I would apologize to all users of Netscape Navigator 2.0, Netscape Navigator 3.0, and Internet Explorer 3.0, except that the site still works on the older browsers. Less prettily, for certain, but it works and it's legible. That's an accomplishment in itself these days.

What can I say? I have a site that serves a purpose as both an educational resource for its visitors and a veritable playground for its webmaster. It's come a long way from being "the Siberia of Cyberspace," as I called it in 1997. The site will soon pass half a million visitors this year since its inception—a blip on the map for Microsoft or Yahoo, but not bad for one Shakespeare site out of hundreds on the Web.

A few people have asked when and why the e-mail policy changed with regard to answering certain questions. Nothing dire happened, and I'm not being grumpy. It changed around the spring of 2001, right around term paper time. I was buried up to my neck in work, both my day job and freelance gigs. I also had a wedding and a much-needed vacation to plan. On top of all that, a string of out-of-state family illnesses was beginning to take a toll on what little concentration I had left. My original reason stands—it was no longer possible to provide accurate, timely, and well-researched replies to the more time-consuming questions.

Plus, I'd begun to have my fill of being a personal research assistant for five to seven people a week, more and more of whom seemed to be e-mailing me one or two days before a paper was due. Such is life.

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