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     Sometime in the summer of 1999, I had my first personal computer setup at my parents' place (Antipolo City in the Island of Luzon).   It was very much like the new computer that was given to the Campus Ministry Office where I then worked as the Campus Minister, except that this had two browsers (Netscape and Internet Explorer) and a CD Rom Drive and a lot more.  When I looked at the Directory, I saw several applications that I have never seen before.  What interested me were Frontpage Express and CoffeeCup.  I tried CoffeeCup but I couldn't understand why it had strange tags like <html> and <a href="">.  I also typed some things on Frontpage and found out that it had features that made it more than a desktop publishing software (before this I was very much at home with desk editing software like Word and WordPerfect).  Later, after I've read some of its "Help" pages, I discovered that it was a web publishing editor.   "Hey," I said to myself, "this is the software they use for making those homepages!"  Unfortunately, we didn't have an Internet connection.  I could have seen what those applications can do on the Net if we were connected then.   But I soon found out that with IE, I can "browse" HTML documents off-line.  It was then that I first made HTML pages with a WYSIWYG editor (What You See Is What You Get).

      My first HTML pages informed anyone who opened my computer of the changes that I have on the Windows 98 Desktop.  This required me to change the computer's System.ini so that it would load "abet.html" at startup.  "Abet.html" was the first in a series of four HTML pages that I wrote using Frontpage.  "Abet.html" welcomed the user to My Computer.  A link ("Next") brought in another page that described the features of the desktop he or she was about to see.  The "Next" link on that page led to another page that explained why the computer had to open up with my pages (it contained elements of self-praise).  And the last page thanked the user for paying attention to my pages, instructing them to close the IE browser (which loaded at the same time as "abet.html") so that they can see the desktop.

     I wrote those four pages (with graphics!) just a few hours before I returned to the University of San Agustin, Iloilo, on a 5:45 AM flight.  It was the first sleepless night I spent writing pages for a browser to read.

pnp


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