Aardvark Avenue Rising From the Ashes

For any that don’t know, web malls back in the 1995-1998 period of the Internet were cheesy attempts at replicating a shopping mall atmosphere online. This was back when Amazon sold books, CDNow sold CD’s, eBay was a new thing to play with and Yahoo was the KING of search engines. There were very few “big name” stores online and the small guys were everywhere trying to get noticed, so these malls were seen as the future of eCommerce at the time. One place to go and find all the little stores that you’d never find otherwise…

SO why do I bring this up? I was looking through some old files on my web server and took a walk down memory lane. A buddy of mind and I use to run a small web design house called Dancing Ink Media. One of our little projects was to create one of these web malls but instead of just being a little bit cheesy like the others, we wanted to play to the cheesiness and do something ridiculous. So we started putting together a web mall that we called AardvarkAvenue. (part of the name choice was to be listed early in all alphabetical lists)

We had an advertising backer in a company called Online Shopper. They produced a newspaper based magazine insert based on online shopping that was starting to get picked up by a lot of metro newspapers. The model for AardvarkAvenue was based on banner advertising revenues. Long story short, Online Shopper went belly-up, we had to pay the bills, and never got it off the ground.

I still own the domain and so I checked and there was still a holder page there with what was going to be the first full-page ad to run in Online Shopper Magazine, which I’ve now moved here…

But what really got me giggling was the fact that the files were all still there. So what I’ve done is decided to play with this domain again and create something to do with online shopping. Not really sure about the details yet, but I’ve placed the files back online so you can surf what we started building back then… Or here for the “winter” version…

Yes, it’s cheesy. I know… Just a bit of my past… And maybe future…

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