The idea for superlow.tech started off as a joke as the domain "low.tech" but as the domain was taken I had to adjust the name.When people think of tech people only want to see the new and shiny instead of the old and ugly sites of yore. I saw how the Space Jam site was still up (favorite childhood movie) and took inspiration that snapshot of the 90's. And because its in the 90's I couldn't pass up on the most memetastic song that screamed 90's, Initial D's "Running in the 90's" both a meme and a joke pointing out how the site looked like it was running in the 90's. I also added the Matrix because it foretells of the upcoming machine uprising and it was also released in the 90's.
What it does
The beauty of this website is that it does nothing that hasn't already been done by older architecture...mostly. This websites encapsulates what old sites did and what we of the present hated. Custom mice, repeating low-res background, messy and hard to read text on the terrible backgrounds.
How I built it
I used Microsoft Visual Studio Code to edit the HTML5 and CSS for the website. I also had help with a mentor who showed me a way to auto-run a video, sadly it didn't work which will be explained in the next section. I also used stack-exchange for information about how to implement the youtube video into my website but not much more than that.
Challenges I ran into
OH MAN the list of challenges that I ran into were immense since I had never designed a website before nor ever uploaded one into a domain before.
To keep things orderly here's a list:
- Finding the right domain name for the website. (Was torn between superold.tech, reallyold.tech, superlow.tech, and reallylow.tech)
- Finding a cheap/free host for the domain since .tech doesn't host the site at all which confused me for hours.
- Trying to point the name domains in the right direction which had me panicking for about 2 hours since the changes took a while to propagate and it stated it would take up to 72 hours which would be after Hack UCI ended.
- I had never coded a website for actual use before so I didn't know which compiler if any to use. Luckily my friend told me which one he used, Visual Code Studio.
- I then had to learn how to code for CSS and HTML since I never used CSS before so that took a lot of documentation reading.
- Lots of adjusting and moving around elements in HTML and CSS
- By far the biggest challenge was the Autoplay feature to capture the feeling of opening a website only to have it blare music in your face. Auto-play would function in HTML form but once uploaded to the domain it would not play.
I tried to debug autoplay for the better part of Friday night into Saturday night and had it as far as auto playing on muted videos. Upon noticing this interaction I found that Google and almost all internet browsers disabled autoplaying videos/mp3s by default unless its muted. This was a huge distraction since I knew that auto playing videos with audio existed on annoying sites but I couldn't find any information how they bypassed the restriction and ate up a lot of my time.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
- While I could not find a successful auto-play method, I did manage to make the music unstoppable once it started playing when the user clicked it. Usually that's not good but because this site is intentionally terrible it was a great step from mediocrity to terribleness
- Getting the HTML to upload to the domains was a huge highlight of my hackathon.
- I had never uploaded a website before and had no experience with hosts or domains.
- I'm happy I was able to successfully put my website up and running on its own two feet leaving my terrible mark on the internet.
- The lagging while unintentional adds authenticity to how slow sites used to be.
- The terrible terrible mouse icon gif that I photoshopped. ## What I learned
- HTML and how it works
- CSS and how it works with HTML
- Website Hosts and Domains
- Embedded Video/Audio Players and how they DON'T autoplay with sound
What's next for Low.tech
- If I ever find a bypass for the autoplay I will update the site so that the player will be hidden and loop forever.
- Yes this site is pure evil