A Brief History of My World
If you're new to the world of The Brak Blog, then you're probably wondering exactly what my deal is, why I do this, blah blah blah. If you're a fequent reader, or any reader for that matter, you might perhaps be currious as to how I've gotten to this point in blog-dom.

This section should serve to answer most of these inquiries.

The Who and the When, but Mainly the When
All of this blogging madness started way back during the summer before freshman year. I'm not exactly one of the 'Dear Diary...' kinda people, but I felt that I should somehow chronicle my highschool years by some means. I had been hearing things about blogs and whatnot, so I decided to start one up. Miraculously, I somehow came across the Blogger service before the accursed Xanga.

The initial title of this project was 'Brak's Highschool Blog' [v1.0]. I had decided to start it mid-way through my facination with everyone's favorite washed up cartoon star, so the idea was to write it from Brak's point of view in highschool. It then dawned on me that I wasn't near as funny as the Space Ghost Coast to Coast people, and couldn't possible write material that clever. At this time, I was still with the Blogger service, so I got all clever and re-named the blog Braker [v1.5], keeping Brak on merely as a mascot.

Yeah yeah, I know. Not that funny. Whatever, it made for a cool logo. The first posts on this predecessor to today's masterpiece were rather sucky. It was me just reveling in the coolness of having a blog. 6 months into it though, I kinda started to pick up speed. And by speed I mean content. With content came the signature 'Cowboy' deally at the end. That's explained on .brak//SIGN. While we're on that topic, .brak//SIGN could probably use a little explination itself.

Blogger was a free service, a free service for blog only. However, I had media to show the world. Pictures, sounds, and more words that don't fit within bite-sized postings. .brak//SIGN was the angelfire site I started to hold all the random media that went hand-in-hand with the rantings of the blog. The name itself is derrived in spoofery from .hack//SIGN, an anime/video game franchise that I've never watched or played, but simply stole the name from.

The world was good. People began reading Braker, .brak//SIGN was filling up with content... It was nice. It continued for a good long while too. Then along comes one Isaac Ahloe, the owner of LandingClouds, around the end of May 2003. He tells me that he's got this new site, and that there's lots and lots of room on it, and that I can have some if I like. I did like, and thus my adventure into the realm of non-free webbing began.

Since around early June of that year I'd been working on perfecting the look and feel of my new blog. On the Blog's birthday, July 24th, I unveiled The Brak Blog [v2.0]. This is probably the spot most of you have come to love [www.LandingClouds.net/m30/blog]. My was this wonderful. I had no banner ads, I had commenting features, a better archive system, and a nifty layout that made use of fun things like Java and CSS. It was heaven for both the creative and dorky parts of myself.

Another unique feature that saw it's advent with The Brak Blog was the use of Greymatter. Isaac set this up for me initally, and I quickly took to the way it handled things. The archives were stored in a very unique way, it could compile monthly logs of blog-dom, and the comments feature was glorious. Sean asked me in recent times what made it so much better than any of the other blogging utilities, (the fact that you use it on paid-sites withstanding) and to be honest I still can't answer. I just grew to like it a lot.

Soon after, I moved .brak//SIGN over to a subdirectory on LandingClouds, and the blog was united, ushering in a golden age of excellent. Now people were reading, commenting, even asking me to put up new posts. This too went on for a fairly extended period of about 6 months, but eventually there was trouble in paradise. I had neglected to post in over a week, and was trying to make up for lost time one night in late-January... it was to be my downfall.

I tried to post a rather sizeable entry, and apparently my session with Greymatter had timed out. Something went amiss though, and the archives index became corrupted in the process. Isaac was going to fix it, but something rather serious came up, and he was not available for blog stuff. When he finally was though, his host had shut down the site because of exceeded server space. When that was finally fixed though, it was suspended again because the version of Greymatter we were all using had a security flaw in it.

When LandingClouds was finally operational again, we all had to delete gm.cgi, the file that allows the user to post and change the site. And so the blog was, in essance, sterilized. This was sometime in mid-february... and so began the great LandingClouds Exodus. I set up a small Angelfire account, keeping what readers I had left informed as to the progress we were making on getting the blog back up.

It was during this time that I realized what I had to do: Now was the time, and Here was the place for me to finally realize my dream of purchasing a domain name and hosting my own website. After five long years of GeoCities, Homestead, and Angelfire, I was finally ready for my own true outpost in cyberspace. You are presently looking at the manifestation of that dream.

Over the span of 2 or 3 weeks, Sean and I looked at hosts, and finally we decided MidPhase Hosting was looking to be the best option. After finally talking my parents into letting me use their credit card, I was the proud owner of BrakBlog.com [v3.0], which you are presently viewing.

It's been quite a trip getting here, all in the name of providing semi-entertaining content to the masses, and leaving my little smudge of a mark on the world. It's been a few months since I've had an honest-to-god post, but I have faith I can still do it. Starting from scratch with this site hasn't been easy, but I've got a feeling it should be every bit as fun.

-Tom "the moTH, Topher, Radiskull" Hogan
March 28, 2004
[Let's Jam]

(P.S.: The Version Marksers [v0.0] I guess need a little blurb. An increase in the first number denotes a change in the host of the site, or a complete overhaul of all coding and content. The second only increases when a layout or design is signifigantly changed within the same site.)

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