Once upon a time in the 1990s....
.. most of us hoarded interesting desktop wallpapers, installed desktop themes so our fonts and windows would match the background, obsessively collected goth and medieval fonts.. loaded creepy skins onto our RealPlayer or WinAmp, and collected horrific webpage backgrounds to decorate our silly Geocities, Angelfire and Tripod sites with.
The "Dark Computer Goodies" links pages (dcomp.html, dcomp2.html, dcomp3.html and dcomp4.html) were the most popular, most visited pages on Dark Side of the Net after the Dark Art pages. Tons and tons of traffic, and the type of links that died often and quickly. It was embarrassing to know that literally tens of thousands of people were visiting those pages every day and finding dead links because Ezskins had changed the way their filenames ended, or AAAThemes had reorganized, or entire sites had gone missing. Darklinks.com got blacklisted from some of the anti-virus security sites because one link out of thousands (long since removed) supposedly had a virus on it.
I'm tending to think I'll delete all the links out of these pages now that they are so out-of-date and most people don't need to go collecting dark computer goodies anymore... I'll keep an archival copy, but I'd not really be interested in going out to find new screensavers links or maintain thousands of links that have to be checked by hand...
Meanwhile, onto today's "Best of the Dark Side" feature: Dark Computer Goodies.
1. Interview with a Vampire Theme
Want your desktop to look circa 1996? Download the IVWTV theme and have at it!
2. Seven Deadly Sims
Aah, I spent many happy hours here leeching dark goodies for my Sims game. Objects, floors, and skins with an alternative flair. I don't have time to play The Sims anymore, but I'm glad to see this site is still going - updated in September 2009.
3. Dreary Land
Creepy, sinister MySpace layouts you can use if you don't want to make your own. They're free. Other goodies here include background generators, plus MySpace tweaks and codes.
4. Astigmatic One-Eye Fonts
I was always so grateful for this freeware font repository. They had cool spooky fonts, and even some skull wingdings!
Fontennium offers historical, sci-fi, Magick, artistic, Celtic and Art Nouveau fonts. For free. Awesome! Thank you guys so much! My favorite is Golden Script.
This site offers 11 pages of fantastic fonts for Halloween or horror pages. Many of them look a little 1996 and silly right now, but it's still a kick to visit here and leech a few things.
7. The Crow: Salvation Screensaver
We don't use screensavers much in this modern Internet age. Our computers can figure it out for themselves, and I rarely see anybody I know using one. For old times' sake, here's The Crow: Salvation, an executable file (Don't install without checking first with your anti-virus software. I haven't tested this link recently).
8. Bella's Dark Graphics
An archive of nice or cutesey goth layouts for MySpace. Twilight layouts, Dark Pinup girls, fairy layouts, and scary layouts.
9. X-Files Wallpapers
Decorate your desktop with nostalgic, dreamy X-files wallpapers.
10. Underworld Wallpapers
Several different choices of professionally designed desktop wallpapers featuring Kate Beckinsale.
11. Bride of Frankenstein Wallpapers
Nostalgic black-and-white "Bride of Frankenstein" wallpaper, perfect for the month of October.
12. Buffy and Spike
Buffy was such a huge trend in the 1990s, I could hardly keep up with my Buffy links. Here's an archive of Buffy and Spike fan art. Not big enough to be desktop backgrounds, but a lot of people used these to decorate their webpages, etc.
13. Disney's Nightmare Before Christmas Wallpapers
If you were active on the net pre-2000, what do you remember about your screensavers, desktop backgrounds, fonts and other computer goodies you used? What was your desktop background at the time? Did you change it often? What screensaver did you use?