A Newfound Hobby
During the summer of 2007, a high-school friend and I discussed starting up a website based around video games.
With neither of us having any prior knowledge on the subject, it was decided between us that I would lead the website. I opted for FreeWebs (now Webs), a website builder with the option to directly create and edit your own webpage files.
Armed with nothing but Microsoft's Internet Explorer 6 and Notepad, I slowly taught myself enough to get a basic layout and theme by using educational resources such as W3Schools, and a lot of trial and error.
FreeWebs had a barebones forum plugin that we initially wanted to use, but with its lack of features and creative freedom, we decided that FreeWebs wasn't the option for us in the end.
By March the following year, I closed my FreeWebs account, and my friend had left the project. It was time for something new; a fresh start, with my newfound hobby. Throughout all of this, I was continuing to further develop my skills.
I didn't give up; I still wanted to create a forum. I had no idea that freely hosted forums were a thing, but a swift Google search brought me to ProBoards. I checked out the features and joined the official support forum. Little did I know how much this decision would affect my life moving forward; even to this day!
Within my profile, I made sure to advertise that I was looking to work on new projects with people. Two main projects spawned from my five-year run with the service — My Notepad and H5 Network — along with a multitude of smaller projects.
Over those five years, I made many friends, but three in particular stand out to me; Mark (from My Notepad), and Rick and Ajay (from H5 Network). I still talk to them almost on a daily basis.
DylRicho.com Is Born
By 2010, I was working towards my GCSEs in high school. One of my three optional subjects was a second IT class based around multimedia. Part of this required us to create a website to showcase our completed project. Edexcel, the exam board responsible, required us to use our school's intranet and gave us an artificial limit of 30 MiB for the entire project.
However, I wanted to go a step further to demonstrate my skills; Mark (from My Notepad) offered to help financially with the domain and hosting. We discussed my plan and shared suggestions for the domain and title, and based on a suggestion that he provided, I thought a portmanteau of my two high-school nicknames, Dyl and Richo, was clever and unique. DylRicho.com was born!
I later expanded the website to host coursework for my other subjects, before developing it further throughout my IT diploma to incorporate freely accessible online-based tools, and an ecommerce section as required for my qualification.
I've always gotten satisfaction out of helping others, and I continue to use DylRicho as a platform to achieve this.