We have lift off!
At last we’ve launched the fabulous, new ILANAMERCER.COM.
The site is huge; the task Herculean. It’s easily the most beautiful site on the WWW.
“Going live” is much like moving into a castle in cyberspace.
Developing some of the concepts was great fun. First to my favorite, the creature named “that funky snake”:
At the risk of being denounced, I did not want the Stars and Stripes on the site. The flag no longer stands for the classical liberal ideas and ideals of self-government and individual rights. I don’t think I’d get an argument from our regular readers.
Other candidates were the Liberty Bell and Liberty Tree. The massive trunk and gnarled bark of the oak (elm was also used) is depicted famously in a lithograph by E. C. Kellogg, the “Connecticut Charter Oak.” (It lives at the Connecticut Historical Society.)
The two symbols, however, turned out to be way too busy as website wallpaper. I just knew that, enlarged as background, the snake symbol would give the page the depth I wanted, bar the busyness. The snake just needed the right artistic touch. He got it.
Although fierce, the rattle snake is an honorable creature that never attacks without provocation and gives its enemies ample notice before attacking. Read about the Gadsden flag here.
The “Ilana Shrugged” concept was certainly unorthodox, down to the Atlas that matched the site’s theme colors.
A nice touch is the call-out side bars on the site’s core pages, showcasing Mercer quotes. The quotes rotate and change each time the page is refreshed. Other favorite and fun elements: the Gallery design, and the mouse-over effect on the upper navigation bar. Naturally, I just had to bring Leonidas into our world. Big and bold. (Read “300.”)
But mostly, the contents. At last, all my work is under one roof, and what a smashing roof it is.
And a huge shout-out to a true maverick: our benefactor, David Szasz. David donated most of the funds for this project.
A big “thank you,” too, to each and every reader who has contributed materially or intellectually.
Update I: Another handy feature: If you wish to receive the weekly newsletter, click “Mailing List” on the navigation bar, and sign up here. Want to “Unsubscribe”? That too is possible, although never recommended.
Update II: Thanks to Sam Karnick of The American Culture for his kind wishes on our launch, as well as to the Canadian economist, champion of liberty, Pierre Lemieux. He quipped that ours was a “nice site/sight.”
Professor Haym Benaroya is most gracious:
Ilana, your new web site is representative of its owner: unique, and attractive to the mind and the eye. You truly are a master of language. I also appreciated the Atlas-like pose, as would have, I am sure, Ayn Rand. I will spend some more serious time looking it over. (I am wondering why, given Sean Hannity’s endorsement, he does not invite you to his show?) Best of luck! I do what I can to publicize your columns.
Update III: Barely a Blog is getting a makeover too. Fear not.
Update V (October 31): Although extremely user-friendly, some of you may find the Advanced Search a little intimidating. So, on the Articles Page, a smart, Search-by-Category button has been set up. Click on it! You’ll arrive at this lovely page, where you can flit between the many search categories with great ease. Let us know how that works for you.
Update VI (Nov. 6): I continue to receive web-approving letters. Thanks to Prof. Rob Sauer of the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies for his kind words; to the intrepid Jim Ostrowski (he has launched a new site too; I wish him all the best. I was always very pleased to have been instrumental in pushing him to write Political Class Dismissed). And to my mother, of course, for her good wishes.
Update VII (Nov. 7): Working with programmers, you learn pretty fast that Microsoft WORD is regarded as a virus. Programmers say it is crappy code. (About programmers, the spouse, who’s an RF engineer, and a PhD., once made this succinct comment: “They–programmers–manipulate ones and zeros; we–engineers–manipulate the laws of nature.”) Fair enough. I won’t get into a turf war; after all, what do I know about code? I’m willing to agree that programmers are right and WORD is crappy from a technical point of view. It sure has gummed up the beautiful font and formatting on my site with HTML gunk. However, WORD is the most popular program in the WORLD.
It is what most of us PC plebs choose to use. The market has spoken. The market always chooses voluntarily what it prefers. Hundreds of million of users have voted. Few of us want to use those other rarified programs PC snobs are always exalting. And for a reason: WORD must have an advantage. (As opposed a government agency, a company grows by gaining market share; by getting people to cast a vote for the product. There is no such thing as monopoly where voluntary exchanges are concerned; only where government is concerned.)
The fact that (far fewer) programmers cannot adapt their code to the most used program chosen by the market is a fault of the programmers, not the market. The market is always right. Call it the aggregate customer. Programmers have simply failed to come up with solution to the problems presented by WORD.
Again, theoretically, programmers who complain about WORD are probably 100% correct, but pragmatically, they’ve not solved the market’s problem. So they’re at fault.
Update VIII (Nov. 21, 2008): I have now launched the most beautiful blog on the WWW, after I had found the perfect blog spot on which to unfurl my signature, Gadsden, “Funky-Snake” flag.