[thelist] EVOLT15

Bill Haenel bhaenel at gmail.com
Mon Nov 18 13:49:30 CST 2013

When I started with web development in 199?, I didn't know anyone else in
the relatively remote region of Northern New York State where I lived who
was working in the same field. Heck, I'm pretty sure we didn't even call it
web development back then.

When I stumbled on Evolt I found a whole bunch of really great people I
could relate to. I found guidance, support, encouragement, and
commiseration. I was also able to help others in my same boat. Like Joel
said, Evolt changed my life. It started my career as a full-time developer,
later going freelance, later leaving freelance, but still developing.

In 2001, a little after 9am on September 11 to be precise, I was headed to
a staff meeting at the radio station where I worked (and still do). We were
grabbing our coffees and thinking about pastries to go with it as usual,
taking our seats and chatting. I checked my Email just before I left my
desk to head down the hall. This simple message came through, followed by a
flood of others:

Nobody, including our news team, had heard about it yet. Meeting cancelled,
everyone to their reporting stations, and the rest is history.

The messages that followed on thelist, from around the entire world, were
mostly focused on supporting each other. For some, thelist was their only
contact with the events that were unfolding. Messages like "I realize that
this is off topic, but, I live here in new york and the net is my only
working connection to the rest of the world right now.  I cannot get any
information from US news sites, can someone post a couple of overseas sites
that I can see what is going on?  I only have radio and net."

Yes, I got the first news of that major event via Evolt, and while it
certainly wasn't a beautiful thing, it certainly gives you some idea of the
significance of thelist in my life at that time.

Beyond that, over the years I got so much positive out of thelist that I
can't even say, so I'll just stop here.


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