Way back in 1999 when the internet was young (long before Yahoo!, Google, Facebook and ebay hit it big) I began designing my Website. The prototype (or first draft) is shown above. This test version was parked on a server so that links, pages and script could be created, tested and verified. After about a year I published my first design (click on the photo above) and became operational. Visitors could now actually use and access my Website. This first fully functional design was constructed around the conventional wisdom of the day. It used the obligatory opening "splash page" containing clickable links that loaded new pages into the main browser. About six months after I published this first version I decided I wasn't happy with all this full page reloading. It was clunky, busy, sluggish, cumbersome and not much fun to use. It just didn't seem the best way to navigate a Website. Keep in mind that the internet was slow back then and it just seemed very time consuming. (Remember dial-up?) So I decided to try and develop a better way. I wanted a new design that would be smoother, easier, more entertaining and, most importantly, faster. Click on the picture. My improvement was to incorporate a stationary link array, seen on the left. This link panel would always remain visible and available. Instead of the whole page changing now just the area in the center of the page loaded the requested information, pictures, etc. The result was something I call the "Center Stage" approach. It was much faster than loading a new page every time. It also did away with a lot of the threading of new links from page to page and the whole page didn't have to reload every time. This accessibility gave the Website visitor unprecedented control over where to go and how to get there. Every category or section would remain just a click away. The difference in page loading times (from the conventional way) was enormous. It might not be as noticeable today, thanks to faster DSL and cable but it was a delightful improvement back then. The "Center Stage" design was also much cleaner, easier to navigate and understand, and it was simpler to use. To see the improved design click on the picture again. Another unconventional time saving tool I employed was special separate floating panels (also known as the dreaded popup). These presented data, facts, details, pictures, statistics, etc. that related to the main subject being displayed. I used these panels the way the developers of html intended, not to annoy people, but to supply auxiliary information without disturbing the main browser. Todays MisterBetamax Website is a culmination of years of work that combines javascript client side operations (to speed things up) with hidden preloads (to further speed things up) plus a lot more technical tweaks and shortcuts that culminate into what I hope is a pleasant and memorable experience for my Website visitors.