Happy 21st Birthday, Basenotes!

Basenotes is celebrating its 21st Birthday (well, it was last week, but we was offline!)

To celebrate, we've had a little bit of a facelift! Have a look around and see what's new!

This is Version 10 of Basenotes.

Like The Doctor, Basenotes sometimes regenerates. Each one may look different, but it's still the same old Basenotes underneath! Let's travel back in time and see the online equivalent of our baby photos!

Basenotes Version 1​

21 years is a long time! When I first made Basenotes, there was no Facebook or Netflix. Each page was coded by hand and uploaded one by one to a server.

This screenshot is from a few months after I had launched the site, though it looks pretty similar to how it looked at launch. When the site launched I just concentrated on men's fragrances, as that's what I mainly knew about.


The forums were run on a perl script called Matt's WWWBoard, and as you can see , it was pretty basic!


At the time, all of the fragrance directory was held in a database on my Bondi-Blue iMac, called Claris Works. The pages for the directory were created by essentially copying and pasting the data on to a webpage. If someone sent in a review (you had to send them in by email in the beginning), I would also copy and paste that on to the page.


The notes pyramid was also an image, that I would have to create for each fragrance. Mainly as I wanted to have the triangle behind the notes, and I didn't know how to do that without making the whole thing an image. (Keep an eye on this Burberry Touch page, we'll be showing how it changed throughout the years.)

Shortly after we launched, the crappy forum script we were using became a little unwieldy. All of the discussion was moved to a website called eGroups. EGroups was a mailing list, so as well as being able to post on the eGroups website, you could also email messages in.


EGroups was later acquired by Yahoo!, and renamed Yahoo! Groups.

Click on the green Next Page button to go to Version 2!

(birthday balloon Photo by Pavel Danilyuk from Pexels)
About the author
Grant is the founder and owner of Basenotes and lives by the sea.

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Thank you Grant for founding this great site for us scentheads 20 years ago. May it still go strong for another 20+ years!

PS Love the new site it rocks on my iPhone!
Happy birthday Basenotes! I didn't actually join Basenotes until 2005 but I recognize the very first version. So green! I also thought it was just for men but I still read reviews and learned a lot. That's why I'm still around; I'm still learning. In addition, I have met wonderful friends here.
What a trip, down memory lane no less! BN was there for me like a cool sanctuary when my life went topsy turvy back then. Thank you for building this awesome tribal space, Grant. It’s been a blast.
Congratulations on your 21st trip around the internet and many wonderful accolades, awards and friends made along the way! Basenotes was one of the rare few fragrance sites that encompassed everything back in the day. Glad to see this gem is still shining and maintaining momentum.
I was a lurker until October, 2006 when. I pulled the ripcord. I stumbled through the Huddled period with the rest. This version raised a both Of getting used to but I am finding it smoother and. easier and easier to use day by day. All in all a good and necessary move by Grant. Cheers 'to Basenotes Birthday!
It's amazing to see how Basenotes has changed over the years and how it was even before I became a member.

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