About My Blog9 min read

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I. About My Blog

A. About Me

James E. O'Neill IV
James E. O’Neill IV

This is the blog of James O’Neill. You can learn more about who that is through my About Me page. You can send me a line on my Contact Me form.

B. Agonizingly Progressive

Agonizingly Progressive Values Found Here!!! You Have Been Warned!!!
Agonizingly Progressive Values Found Here!!! You Have Been Warned!!!

You will find that I am agonizingly progressive. If you do not like progressive politics and life stances then you may want to run away now. You have been warned!

C. My Writings

In my non-fiction writing, which is most of what you will find here, I tend to write very verbose and academic with reading scales (such as the Flesch-Kincaid) rating my writing at college and graduate level.

In my fiction writing, which are a distinct minority, such as flash fiction, narratives, and short stories, I tend to write at the Junior High School level. Wow! What a difference!

My blog will cover a few basic topics:

  • Mostly
    • politics
    • futurism, science, technology
  • On Occasion
    • geeky stuff (sci-fi, fantasy, gaming)
    • religion
    • sexuality
  • Rarely
    • usability
    • writing (creative fiction)
    • life updates

If you see my website acting strange or if anything seems out of place on my blog, then please let me know. I had a link spam hack a while ago which has been dealt with.

II. My Website History

A. A Website Since 1999

I have had a website in some form since 1999 when I started college for computer programming following finishing my 6 year stint in the Navy as a Nuclear Reactor Operator during the Iraq War.

This section will show you my winding path from evolving from a hand-coded site on using my local ISP’s web space to my full on WordPress Blog hosted on a Virtual Private Server (VPS) with changes in between.

B. Hand-coded Site (1999)

Book Cover for HTML4 for Dummies
Book Cover for HTML4 for Dummies

During this phase of my life, at the very beginning of my journey into the internet and while just starting college and recovering from separation/divorce, I started learning HTML from HTML for Dummies just to see what all of the web stuff was about, and so I could put to use the 5MB of space on my local internet account.

I was suffering, as many people were during this era, from using Internet Explorer 3 (IE3) for a browser during my learning process. I quickly learned how crappy IE was and was using Netscape 3 for my learning process because it was more unforgiving and forced me to really learn how to code more properly.

My first website was static, hand-coded, and dedicated to supermodel Laetitia Casta. I do not think I had a domain yet and I was just using my ISP’s local web space. It was made with frames other bad things. I really am a bit embarrassed to share this, and please keep in mind I had NO idea what I was doing, but here ya go! Enjoy that red text on a black background!

My First Website - Laetitia Marie Laure Casta - An Incarnation of True Beauty
My First Website – Laetitia Marie Laure Casta – An Incarnation of True Beauty

C. Shifting to a More Blog Format (2003)

Later on, though, I dropped all the super model stuff and added more standard website elements to it. Check it out in all of its glory! These screenshots are from the Wayback Machine are after the switch to a more “blog” format. Keep in mind, that at this time I was using frames because that was the thing to do in those days, so the Wayback Machine has only captured the main frame here which means the main navigation is missing, which I think was on the left. Oh, I was also using Java applets for the main menu and the site logo, both of which do not work now. I was able to find the code for the website. Not much else to see because the Java applets do not work, which means there is A LOT of content there that is not being connected.

I think it may have been near this time when I purchased my primary domains ArionsHome.com and FreeXenon.com from Name Zero because this is the first time that the WayBack Machine has content for ArionsHome.com, although I may have purchased it earlier. I don’t know. I do not have the records for this, since I did not have GMail during that time (was using Netscape email previously, I think). I should also consider transferring some of my content from there to here. Hmmm…

So, now you ask, why Arion’s Home and why Free Xenon for domain names? Well, lucky for you, I have the answers to those questions written up here:

D. Blogspot Blogs (2005)

In October 2005, following getting married to the most wonderful woman, Tatsiana, currently my wife of 14+ years, and while we were getting our lives put together I shifted my web work from a static site to a full personal blog @ ArionsHome.Blogspot.com. I also had FreeXenon.Blogspot.com which was focused on web development articles. Here is my post on it: Beginning Again.

I am assuming that ArionsHome.com and FreeXenon.com both redirected to both of these Blogspot blogs.

E. ArionsHome.com WordPress Blog (2008)

In 2008, as I started to become much more politically aware and active, I started a full WordPress blog @ ArionsHome.com on Dreamhost where it stayed for 11 years from October 2008 to June 2019. Here is my post on it: New Home for Arion’s Home.

Screenshot of ArionsHome.com in 2013
Screenshot of ArionsHome.com in October 2013

F. Redesign in 2018

In 2018 I began a rather large overhaul of the website starting with a major search for a better theme, which I eventually found, as well as plugins for a mega menu and some accessibility features. Here is my post on this process: Website Redesign in Progress (2018).

Screenshot of ArionsHome.com June 2019
Screenshot of ArionsHome.com June 2019

G. Shift to FreeXenon.com (2019)

A few years prior to this transition I realized that I should move my blog to FreeXenon.com from ArionsHome.com because I use Free Xenon as my online pseudonym everywhere and I have done so, for a very long time, at least since leaving the military and starting my journey online in 1999. Here is my post on this transition: New Home for My Blog!

Screenshot of FreeXenon.com in July 2019
Screenshot of FreeXenon.com in July 2019