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My First Paying Gig



Some developers get started in their careers by doing freelance or volunteer work to build something that builds their skills, resume, and/or bank account.

Here’s my story!

I was 19 years old. I had been making simple web pages for a few years now…

In 1996, Netscape Navigator goto support for a feature called Frames. Unlike IFrames which go anywhere in a document, Frames divide up the viewport with rows and columns, by loading separate HTML documents.

When you didn’t have Server Side Includes or access to Perl, there were the best way to make repeatable navigation.

“Oh, the late 90s…”

The local sports complex was hiring for the concession stand, but when they found out I know website –

“Yeah, I can build you one!”

Since I was technically working with kids, I had to go to the local police station to be fingerprinted…

I eventually delivered the site and got my first ever freelance check.

“…I bet I could’ve asked for more…”


I even did an illustration for the site! Folks holding letters to spell the complex’s acronym…

“People holding signs seems to be my illustration ‘thing’…?”