Monday, April 18, 2011

Slackerdom magnified...

Remember the nineties, when slackerdom was a high art?  Back when I was in my early twenties, I would kill time a lot of ways between C.S. and core classes at the University of Maryland at College Park.  Among them, I’d (1) plot the future milestones of my twenties, (2) learn basic guitar chords, and (3) make primitive raw-HTML-based webpages.

Mind you, this was before the social networking “revolution” and the rise of high-definition Web 2.0 “clean” design aesthetics.  This was so long ago that CSS 3 was considered cutting edge.  AOL had just merged with Time-Warner and was still considered a major player as an “Internet service provider.”  I still used Netscape Navigator as my browser of choice.  Napster was still running, straining the bandwidth of college servers everywhere.  Ahhh, the memories.
Yes, I’m an old person now.

Anyways, around the turn of the millennium, I created a primitive set of webpages, called “Meguana’s Lefty Guitar Chords.”  Alas, the Internet Archive (a/k/a the “Wayback Machine”) reveals that only a crappy husk of my erstwhile crappy compendium of backwards chord charts remains on the world-wide web as of April 2011.  Sadly, the Internet Archive has no traces of the southpaw chord chart image files themselves, once so lovingly rendered in beautiful anti-aliased 8-bit format.

The website that hosted my lefty chord homepages,, stopped hosting user webpages during the Dot Bomb Fallout of 2001.  If you remember this era, it was a period of panicky, frenzied internet holdings reorganizations.  Foolishly, I failed to migrate the lefty chord pages during the spring of 2001.  (In my defense, I was probably swamped with C.S. programming projects at the time.)

Of course, if I were to resurrect this chord chart project today, I'd simply use PHP to parse well-formatted ASCII diagrams (or some sort of basic XML chord notation) into dynamically generated PNGs, using some full-featured open-source graphics libraries.

Caveat: If you look at the lefty webpages, you’ll find that the fact-checking is fairly spotty.  In particular, I get the feeling that many of the “lefthanded guitarists” I’ve listed are actually righthanded, ambidextrous, or otherwise “backwards” because somebody just simply digitally reversed a photo of a live performance.

1 comment:

  1. Clicking on the link brings back memories of the "south paw" at the top of the page, and the famous lefty guitarists... Though it's not fair that the chords themselves are inaccessible. That would be cool if you brought them back with the PHP code...