QuickSite circa 1996 – Websites Have Come So Far

This was a cool website in the mid-90’s! No animations, interactive menus, I-Frames, CSS or responsive design elements. Just a few JPGs and some different text sizes.

DeltaPoint's website circa 1996. Created by QuickSite.

DeltaPoint’s website circa 1996. Created by QuickSite.


Around 1995 I huddled up with a few friends including Bill French (the creator of LapLink for us seasoned tech folks) and thought of an interesting way to create websites based on a database. HTML was just starting to emerge and many people were trying to learn this new “markup” language. There was no WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) tools and building decent websites was hard.

The concept was simple. Create templates for a website structure and let people type in the content. The tool would worry about the HTML tagging and keeping the structure intact. Furthermore, changing the content would be simple since you could just update a database form and magically it’d be presented as a web page. We’d call it QuickSite.

We wrote a business plan, created v1, pitched the idea and bingo! QuickSite was sold to DeltaPoint in a deal valued around $6M bucks. That was pretty good money “way back when” for a technology company with 3 people who didn’t raise a cent.

DeltaPoint QuickSite went on to become the #1 selling website building product in retail stores (remember those?) and won over 8 industry awards. It was also the beginning of my startup phase. Now with over 6 startups under my belt, I realize that it’s not so easy! Fast forward to today and almost all websites are build with dynamic content generated from a database. Think Amazon, Yahoo, Google, etc. etc.

Just as a comparison, here was Yahoo’s website in October of 1996.

Yahoo! website in 1996

Yahoo! website in 1996

Thank goodness for the WayBack Machine for capturing this bit of history.

About song

Tech guy in the silicon valley. If you need anything else, look on the blog. It's all there.
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