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#286469 06/25/2001 12:24 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 3,590
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Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 3,590
Interview by: Greg "MasterMind" Hard
Spotlighted site: TextCentral.com


UBBDev
Let's start with a little "behind the scenes" information on yourself.
What is your background and how long have you been on the web?

TextCentral
I've been on the web for so long as a surfer, but only began in 1997 as an actual
webmaster. My cousin emailed me about a website she was creating and asked me
to check it out. I thought it was a cool thing that anyone can make a website
from scratch and publish it right away. Back then I was totally clueless. I
knew nothing about HTML or FTP or CGI. So I purchased a book called "HTML
for Dummies", which gave me a good background on coding.

At that time, I was fresh out of college and had nothing better to do. In the
country where I'm from, (the Philippines) text messaging was such a craze, and
I was crazy about it too. My site started off in Tripod with news, tips &
tricks about text messaging and cellular phones, jokes and an unbelievably crappy
message board. But people kept coming and posted messages. That got me going.
I eventually searched for a better (remotely-hosted) message board, not UBB™,
though, that brought in a steady flow of visitors.

UBBDev
How did you come up with the idea for TextCentral?

TextCentral
As my site got really boring and old, I felt that it was time to get serious.
My old website was called 'IHTML', but due to the possibility of being slapped
with a copyright infringement lawsuit, I settled for TextCentral, a name my
friend suggested. I closed down the site for a few months but made the message
board available for my visitors. As I was in the process of redesigning, I ran
into Infopop's UBB™. I read so many great things about it, but there was
one big problem: I didn't know squat about CGI.

Despite that, I proceeded and purchased the software. No, I didn't buy a book
called "CGI for Dummies" this time. I simply did a little research
on modifying and installing CGI, which was good enough for me. TextCentral was
relaunched December last year.

UBBDev
What is your favorite movie of all time?

TextCentral
Definitely "X-Men The Movie". I literally grew up reading comics,
and maybe two books.

UBBDev
What soda do ya like?

TextCentral
Sprite. It sucks because some restaurants don't carry it, so I settle for 7-Up.

UBBDev
What do you like and dislike most about the UBB™?

TextCentral
What's great about UBB™ is the endless ways you can modify it to suit your
needs. What's not so great is that it takes so much energy and time to get the
results that you want. It's basically a love-hate relationship.

UBBDev
Are there any "tricks of the trade" you'd like to share that any UBB™
owner can use to improve the success of their site?

TextCentral
I dunno, I haven't been around that long to consider my site a success. But
what I would like to convey to every webmaster is that keeping it simple is
key. Going crazy on your graphics will do more harm than good. With that in
mind you can easily tell between a professional and unprofessional website.
Go surf around and look for sites that you like. Build ideas as you do this,
then try to emulate them into your design.

UBBDev
What is yours and your users favorite UBB™ hack?

TextCentral
It's a tie between Who's Online and the Avatar hack. My users like Who's Online
because it's a discrete yet sneaky form of 'spying'. You'll know which members
are online and at the same time what the hell they are doing. On the other hand,
with the Avatar hack, my members can choose an image they can identify with;
in my case, images of cellular phones. It's cool and personal and adds to the
whole aesthetic of my forum.

UBBDev
Why did you pick UBB™ over other software?

TextCentral
It's the best one out there. And probably because there's a whole community
(courtesy of UBBDev) to help you out and create hacks for you for free. There's
a sense of belonging and no one is left out. It feels good to be part of it.

:::

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