Client History, or How I Had No Clue What I Was Doing

I’m looking at my MSN history where I talked with a client, and I really do bounce around a lot. I think I’m going to have to read the last couple lines before replying, to ground myself. As it is, I seem to answer each question on its own, and completely forget the context surrounding it.

Ha: Almost a year ago, I mentioned to him: “…we’re going to get high-speed satellite hookup, next.” We never did.

Oct 18 2008: Client asks what he’d need to make a webpage. We eventually start talking about prices. I’m baffled as I try to babble about what this or that would cost. Eventually, we agree on something like $75 for a simple site with some maintenance and web hosting. (Later, I’d increase it to $100 to cover some of the things I’m doing, like paying for the hosting myself. He paid me $100 plus the hosting fees.)
Oct 23 2008: Client is “working on that layout” for his website. He asks about mailing money, and I mention PayPal and Bank Transfers.
Nov 16 2008: Client appears to have completed the layout and taken some photos. He inquires about attaching the files to email. I agree.
Jan 05 2009: I finally meet with the client, and we go over some of the things he wants on his site. I receive a layout written onto an envelope, which I’ll later use to create the basic layout. Later, I test my luck and my patience as I sign up for PayPal.
Jan 27 2009: I finally move into my own place, and have peace enough to start work. I make a quick and ugly mock-up of the site. At the moment, I’m relearning all the XML that I was taught in college.
Feb 03 2009: Client drops off catalogues from his providers, which means I have all the information about his products. I still need more information about his services, though.
Feb 08 2009: I have finished going through the xml lessons, and have designed an AJAX page to dynamically load male, female, or child models of clothing by use of an xml document containing the information for all of the products from one catalogue. The rest of the site remains crude.
Feb 14 2009: I finally get my own internet, which means I have a stable connection and fast speeds. Client calls, and we talk at length about what the site should be.
Feb 17 2009: I spend the next few days (or nights, rather) in a whirlwind of activity, as I discover the wonderful world of web design. I find jQuery, and reacquaint myself thoroughly with CSS. I search through blogs and news sites, and truly become a web designer.
Feb 23 2009: Paypal finally went through. I had to wait on my bank to accept some PayPal deposits, which I then read back to PayPal to authenticate my access to that account. Afterwards, I had to wait for the money I ordered to transfer from the bank to PayPal. It took awhile. Finally, the site is created.
Feb 25 2009: I lose my internet stick (and thus my internet), then a friend comes in for the week, I get another internet stick, but I get sick, then finally recover
Mar 11 2009: Redesign of the website. So much better, and I don’t feel embarrassed about showing it to people, now.
Mar 13 2009: Friend is back in town and I’m busy again. The dogs need plenty of attention. He should be gone on Mar 20th, apparently.
Mar 18 2009: I get some work done on the site, and come closer to the eventual completion. Possibly a week away.

Notes of the above:
-I was so not ready to haggle right then. I had never thought of a price, and had never really encountered how long it would take to make a site. Now, I’m sure to promise nothing less than two months, and for not less than $300. Unless it’s a smaller site, of course.
-Technically, I started at the beginning of February. I might complete at the end of March. So really, it technically could take only two months, even if you don’t account for all the pitfalls inside those two months.
-The client doesn’t really have things together, either, which takes some of the pressure off of me.
-It’s actually kind of challenging for me to talk to people who know nothing about computers. I live in this high-tech micro-world, and so I kind of take for granted that people know certain things (such as what ZIP files are, or how to copy files from one directory to another). It’s a learning experience.
-I moved about $150 to my PayPal, because I found out it sucks to run out of money when you can’t wait two weeks for extra delivery.
-I maybe should have gotten the plug-in-anywhere portable modem, instead of the mobile rocket-stick. We’re talking eighty times the data allowance per month. The thing is, I plan to get a laptop later, so the stick would be easier to carry around. Also, most power outlets have two plugs, which fits a computer + monitor. I’m not a heavy octopus user, and so I don’t like extra power things at the computer.
-I’m still mourning the events of the 25th, to this day. That was the best time of my life, I’m sure, and I haven’t been able to have that back for almost a month, now. I’m really feeling it. I hope things go back to normal soon.

I’ve almost gotten a sign-up page for the client. I’m ecstatic that I could do something like that. I’ll be programming my own Facebook in no time!
I’m also going to put up an ikonBoard.

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