If you told me 15-20 years ago while I was in charge of Community Products at AOL — where homepages were part of my purview — that we’d still be trying the crack business of Website creation today I’d have discounted your prescience. Well, discount all you like, late-90’s Rick, because you’d have been wrong.

You couldn’t blame me too much for the confidence, though, as we were making homepage creation pretty simple. At one point I pushed for the auto-creation of sites wherein new members who joined AOL would be handed a free, pre-formatted homepage tied to a keyword (their “screen name”) so they could tell friends, “find me at keyword JoesPizza.” This was before it was simple to create an external Website matched to a domain, and keywords were the currency of the time, so it made sense. Alas, the business behind it didn’t hold up and full execution never happened.

During the intervening years many site-builders have come and gone. Some went the path of offering incredibly rich

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Source: Street Fight