The URI! Domain which went online in August 1999 was a function-over-frills approach to web design. With my priorities shifting, I found that I didn't have as much time to devote to the URI! Domain, especially with so much work being put into the 1999 edition of the MV Trumpets website. By this point in the life of the URI! Server, the Domain was only getting a few dozen visitors a month, compared to the Trumpet page which got over ten thousand hits one semester.
Since fewer people were visiting, I spent the summer streamlining the entire Domain, removing parts that people didn't visit, and cropping sections to make for easier maintenance. The Everflowing Story petered out completely (I even stopped promising to update it "some day"). Sections that relied on e-mail posting I rewrote to include automatic CGI handling, which meant less work for me on the server side of things.
This was the first Domain that I really didn't learn anything new to create. In fact, the only part of the Domain that could be considered "new" was a massive password-protected MP3 archive filled with hundreds of songs, most of which were Jazz and Classical MP3s. Since I didn't publicize the site, it was really a self-serving section that allowed me to pass MP3s on to friends and family. Without the draw of a Roleplaying Guidebook on my server, the casual traffic lessened every month, until only a few dedicated visitors came on a regular basis.
The Fifth Edition was basically a neutered version of the Fourth. I moved into an apartment for my final year at Tech, and gave up my access to a dedicated T1 line. Luckily, the music department server has no space restrictions for majors, as the Domain no longer fits on free sites like Geocities (where it resided during the summers in the early years). Because I now had to FTP to a server not my own, I could no longer use any of my nifty CGI programs like the message board poster and the counter. Updates were also few and far between, since I had to perform them over slow phone lines. The best part about hosting my own site on my own computer was that the changes took effect immediately after saving them.
As the year passed, I ended up performing updates on the Music page but not much else. In 2001, even that slipped, and the only changes visitors saw on the page were the occasional newsflashes. As April 2001 approached, I devoted my energies towards maintaining a Recital webpage instead.
The Sixth Edition had the largest injection of new content since the Second Edition in 1997. I also reduced the number and importance of graphical widgets while standardizing the way you navigated through the site (those Human-Computer Interaction & Interface Design classes paid off after all). As a side project, I learned how to use style sheets to an extent, which improved the site's look in IE.
This site's key feature was the daily News update, which started out as a simple way to keep folks abreats of my daily routine. Having just moved to Florida for grad school, I'd planned to make updates that interested Virginians could read. This also meant that I could keep in touch with old friends without having to tell the same stories over and over again. As more Florida friends discovered the site, the News updates gradually became more localized and (hopefully) interesting.
I devoted most of my energy to the News section this year, but also had the occasional update in Music, Photos, and Reviews. Since the site was still located on the VT Music server, there were no interactive bits, other than the e-mail link on every News post that few people took advantage of. I closed the Domain for the summer in April 2002 and switched over to "sort of weekly" updates so I wouldn't burn out.
The only other section that saw many updates this year was the Photos page. Once I got a new cat (Booty), the Photos page went into sensory overload for a couple months. Like the Sixth Edition, this site also closed for the summer in April, but it only stayed closed for about a month before I opened the new edition.
This edition of the URI! Domain was something of a placeholder. I released it in June rather than August, and besides the obvious graphical changes, I shuffled some content around and added emphasis to a simpler style and navigation. I had originally planned to open shop on a brand new server with neat tricks like a forum and News comments, but decided to wait until a suitable domain name was available. Plus, you can't argue with the free service offered by my old alma mater.
The Eighth Edition was only active for four months before being rechristened as the URI! Zone in November 2003.
In October 2003, I finally took the plunge and purchased a domain name and commercial web space. Because www.uridomain.com was associated with a porn site, I chose www.urizone.net after polling my readers. The result required me to rename the site as The URI! Zone. I don't label it as the ninth edition, since the eighth was only around for a few months before being engulfed wholesale.
This edition felt like a mature site to me. Content was well-ordered and easy to navigate, and much easier to maintain and update than earlier versions. I originally tried to make every page XHTML compatible, but abandoned that task as being impossible.