Brown Ajah Academy History
This was an article originally hosted on the Brown Ajah website in 2003.
Over two years ago something happened that has had an effect on all of our lives. The Tower was created. Now two years ago, the founders had no idea their creation would grow to be so big, so they didn't record specific dates. Some things are lost to us forever, eaten by ezboard's topic pruning or simply never written down because - who's going to care anyway?
We have however been able to pin down the date when the pages were first created, and that is for all intents and purposes the birthday of the Tower.
On March 25, 2001, Mother and her friend Gwendolyn Sedai first connected the Ajah sites with the main White Tower page. The first pages to actually be created earlier that March were the Blue and Green Ajah homepages. (Gwendolyn created the Blue and Mother created the Green). After fiddling around with message board providers they finally settled on Ezboard as the best value (free ;) ). The Boards were all split up then. You had to go to your control center to get from "General" to "The Hall of Novices". *gasp* That's actually more or less what we've gone back to now, only there was no master list on the bottom. The original chat room was a java client called bseen. A (sometimes drunken) good time was had by all. Friendships were forged, members were raised, and Novices were beaten.
In August 2001, we bought the TarValon.net address. Before that our address was a free geocities account, but the ads and limited page editing ability had finally driven us batty.
A major weak point in our layout was the unequal development of the male and female halves of the Tower. The female half came 'ready made' with Ajahs and rivalries already in place. The male half still needed some work. (And members!) In January 2002, the Companies were formed. You can see the progression here. The companies were officially opened for membership on 1/29/02. All existing male members chose a company, and all new male members could join as soon as they became Soldiers.
January/February 2002, our flash made its debut. Basically Mother wanted a movie to open the site with, and we'd just acquired the web design talents of Valorian. Voila, our movie was born.
In July 2002, we got a new front page to match our new flash movie.
In August 2002, we ran into problems with the message boards. A year ago, having 3 people at the boards at one time was cause for celebration. By this time there were at least a dozen people on almost all the time. We'd paid for ezboard gold about 6 months ago, but the money was due again, and the funds did not exist to pay for all five message boards. We decided to pay the fee for just the main message board and move the other forums to that board address. It was very convenient! Not so much clicking and scrolling around to check a few forums, but the different forums lost some of their individualism and ezboard continued to present us with problems.
By September 2002, our average post count per day was triple that of the largest web community: Dragonmount.com.
In October 2002, the Hall shifted its function from advisory to the Amyrlin to overseeing membership. The Hall had been feeling growing pains since the beginning of the site. Hall Sitters are generally active members who want to do something. They've almost gotten more then they bargained for overseeing membership. The Hall now approves new applications, new Novices/Recruits, and new Accepted/Soldiers.
On October 25, 2002, the Senior Membership forum was created. A long overdue and much loved accessory, this was the first forum that allowed the male and female Senior Members to mingle in private.
April 24, 2003: With the ezboard payment looming on the horizon (and at the better part of $1000 dollars, way out of our price range) we moved the boards to their current location at www.sandmashadar.com/tarvalon/masterindex.html. The boards remained undecorated until May 30. Nevertheless, the Tower rejoiced and settled into its new home.
Also on April 24, 2003, our TarValon.net opened up an entirely new phase of membership. Before this date, new members became Recruits or Novices immediately. With the opening of the City of Tar Valon, new members became Citizens of TarValon.net first. The rules governing citizens are much lighter, and it allows people who just want to play with us to be more than visitors without pinning them down.
In May 2003, the main page undergoes another revision. We're not sure exactally what it's going to look like, because it's not quite done yet. LoL