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August 7th, 2006
Mon, Aug. 7th, 2006 11:43 am

Eleven years ago I taught myself basic HTML and started a Momus website. Here's how it looked as it welcomed visitors back in August 1995:



Amazingly enough, all the content listed on that 1995 splashpage is still online. This is blogging avant la lettre. Want to see my Paris flat that year? Click The House of Momus. Want to read a comments thread, 1995-style? It's called Cork Slab and it's a plain text "Democracy Wall for social cabbages". (How rude! No wonder only my then-wife Shazna is on there!) Then there's the Photograph Album (mostly pictures of me wearing a 90s goatee beard and posing with pretty young girls), the useful plagiarist's crib sheet, How to write a Momus song, the funny-faced friends page and the library.

Although it's still online, this slim, fat, fast, slow, expansive, amateurish and inspirational website, which managed to rack up a million hits, has basically been a drifting corpse, a red dwarf, since late 2003. In early 2004 I started Click Opera, and all my new content is here. I often refer back to my Monthly Essays, though, and I use my old website's server to host multimedia files like movies, mp3s and podcast files.

Since 2003 (when I acquired the rights to the imomus.com domain) physical hosting for imomus.com has been provided to me free of charge by a kind Australian called Andrew Gerrand (he also hosts the www.ilxor.com bulletin boards). Yes, the Momus website has been coming to you from Melbourne for the last three years. Unfortunately, Andrew can't keep offering me this kind service forever, and has asked me look around for another benefactor, or find commercial hosting.

Now I'm in a bit of a quandry. Is it really essential to keep this archive of sometimes rather embarrassing old 90s Momus-lore online? Is the encyclopedic thoroughness of imomus.com preventing other Momus fansites from coming into existence? If I just let imomus.com die, would there be more interest from publishers in, for instance, publishing my essays in a book?



Half of me would be perfectly happy to let the drifting, semi-dead old site go the way of all html flesh. But half of me would jump at the chance to host it free somewhere. After all, it does supply the official lyrics pages to my own records, including the forthcoming one, Ocky Milk. (My lyrics are mirrored -- rather more tidily -- by the Phespirit site.)

So... any takers? Any happy hosters? If you adopt my eleven year-old, he shouldn't cause you much trouble. He's 1.3 GB big, but he's shrinking, not growing; as you can see from the yearly page visits graph above, accesses have plummeted recently, so imomus.com wouldn't burn much bandwidth. And I still own the imomus.com domain, so with a little DNS reconfiguration we wouldn't even need to change his address. Prospective adoptive parents, leave a comment here or mail me.

For snapshots of the Momus website from other years, visit Wayback Machine, the web time-travelling site.

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