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Wilkinsons.Com Technical/History Page

This page is provided for those people who for some reason or another want to know somw of the more technical issues behind Wilkinsons.Com or perhaps a little history of the site. I will make no claims as to its aesthetic merits, and most people will probably find it boring.


This whole thing started while I was a graduate student at Georgia Tech in the 1990s. This was the very early days of the internet, well before cat videos. On the computer at my desk, I had a direct LAN connection to the internet complete with IP address and name ( In the spare time while experiments were running, I fiddled around with programs that I downloaded from the Atlanta Macintosh Users Group and other soures. One day, I downloaded MacHTTP, the predecessor of WebStar, and discovered that I could put pages up that were accessible from the internet.

My first attempts were (of course) my own home page and resume. When I discovered that no one cared to look at my page, I tried to find a hook to bring people in. The hook presented itself when I searched for my own name on one of the web indexes (like you haven't searched for yourself before, admit it). There were Wilkinsons all over the place. I created a simple page with a list of Wilkinson pages and sent an email message to the owners of each page letting them know that the link had been established. The original address of Wilkinsons on the Web was, long since deleted. Some of those original listed page owners are still listed on the Wilkinsons Home Pages page, and have been very helpful in promoting and supporting the Wilkinsons on the Web project.

Gradually, the page grew beyond the scope of a single page, and was broken into the several pages that encompass the Wilkinsons on the Web site. Using a university scanner and software, the coat of arms page was developed. Searching through email indices resulted in the first Wilkinsons Email page (now deleted in the age of privacy concerns). The discovery of the GED2HTML program instigated the Wilkinsons Genealogical Database and its associated page, the Wilkinsons Genealogy Page. Most of the rest of the site grew from user submissions, which now encompass a majority of the information listed.

Eventually, the popularity of the site started to noticeably slow down my desktop Mac, and the site was moved to a Sun server on campus. The second address for the Wilkinsons on the Web site was, also now llost to the ages.

In September of 1996, I left school with my degree and moved to Dallas, TX. The site was moved to a private ISP in the area, and the domain name was designated for the first time. Unfortunately, in December of 1996, the president of that ISP broke into his own company and stole all of the resources (computers, money, etc.). The site disappeared for quite a while, and some information was lost forever.

In February of 1997, the site resurrected with a new service provider (and a monthly rather than yearly contract). The website has moved a few more times, but is now hosted with a reputable company and on a cloud server that should keep it going without any additional fiddling. Wilkinsons.Com is doing very well now. Dynamically updating pages let interested parties update some of the pages instantaneously, greatly reducing the administrative time required, which is a good thins since I have had a real job for quite some time and have decreasing ability to work on the core pages of the site.

Other sites have gradually been added to, often with their own addresses. My father's Tattoo Removal business got its own site in the late 2000s. The blog site Banana Stew has been around since the early 2000s. Telecommedy is a new site for a book that I've written that may or may not get published. It's a hodgepodge.

No, I don't make a living off of this site - it's a hobby, not a buisness. Which brings me to the next section....

Advertising and other financial issues (It's a hobby, not a buisness)

There is very little advertising on Around 2015, I tried to pull it all off of the site because I found it annoying. There are a few Amazon links hanging around, but the majority of the intrusive stuff is gone. I'd like the money, but I don't need it. You're welcome.

Technical stuff

For the geeks out there, I will detail the hardware and software that keep this site humming.

SOFTWARE: All of the original pages were created and modified in Microsoft Word or occasionally in Netscape Gold. There's a history lesson for you. The site is maintained now in Microsoft Expression Web. It would be nice to have something more advanced some day, but this works fine for the limited purposes of the site.

 The genealogical database is/was maintined using Family Tree Maker (a genealogical database program) and GED2HTML (a GEDCOM to HTML converter). Honestly, with the advent of online genealogical databases, I don't do much with that section anymore.

For the historically minded, here's what was originally written in this section: Submitted GEDCOMs are not imported into any genealogical database program, but are merely altered (using Microsoft Word) so that all individual and family numbers are unique. This ensures that submitted data is never lost. The multiple GEDCOM files are written to a single file using a shareware program that adds text files together. Scanned pictures are manipulated using Adobe Photoshop. The drawn pictures (buttons, etc.) were created in Canvas on a Macintosh. The scripts (counter, dynamic pages) are written in Perl and modified from scripts downloaded from Matt's Script Archive. Updates to the site are performed using AbsoluteFTP for FTP. Email is handled using Eudora. I think that's all, but I may have missed a few.

HARDWARE: All of the pages were orginally created using a Power PC Macintosh 7100/66 (AV), then migrated to a laptop Toshiba PC, and now I keep the working copies of everything on a Dell running WAMP. The site runs on a Unix machine that I have never seen, but have talked on many occasions.

Final Thanks

This site could not run without the support of the users. Thank you all for you letter of encouragement, your submissions, and your patronage.

Scott Wilkinson (Click Here)
Atlanta, GA USA