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Why is this site here?

This is Peter Gaunt’s personal website. Quite why I need a website I don’t really know. Probably almost pure vanity. Plus it gives me something to do and keeps me off the street.

If you want to know more about me rather than about the site then you could do worse than look at my short (but getting longer) biography.


The site started out as one of Demon Internet’s home pages way back in 1994 or thereabouts. It was mainly a repository for the software I wrote (and still write occasionally) for the Acorn Risc PC.

I then started adding a few other bits and the site settled down into something like its current form after a year or so.


Eventually I got fed up with not being able to do very much with it except putting flat, boring (from my point of view) HTML pages on it.

In 2000 I decided to buy my own domain and a few megabytes of storage for the site. Initially I simply transferred the Demon site to the new one. I then set about learning how to write scripts in Perl, and later in PHP, which was something I’d been unable to do when the site lived at Demon.

When I first bought the domain the site lived on Entweb’s servers until that outfit went belly up when I moved it to Webfusion. I moved it again, to one of Webfusion’s Virtual Private Servers (VPS) in August 2006 although it remains to be seen whether I’ll be able to keep up with managing my own server.


The pages are mainly produced with a 2.3GHz dual-processor PowerMac G5 using BBEdit. In the past they’ve been produced with an Acorn Risc PC, using Zap, and with an Apple iBook using BBEdit.

The Mac makes the site quite easy to test because I can run it locally using the Apache web server built into Mac OS X before I upload it to the real site. Big boo-boos are less likely to make it onto the real site.

Browser requirements

The site should work with more or less anything. Some of the pages use bits of Javascript but where necessary I’ve provided alternatives for browsers which don’t have Javascript capability. If I’ve missed anything here please let me know.

That’s about it other than to say that you appear to be browsing with a browser which I don’t know about. Hope you enjoy the site.

Last changed: 7 September 2006

Why ‘dawnsun’?

When I decided to buy my own domain all the names I thought of had been taken. So I wrote a little program which combined, at random, words between two and five letters long from a crossword dictionary. Every now and then I’d run it and see what it produced.

Eventually, it came up with dawnsun. I liked the name and, moreover, thought it was pretty apt. My flat is on top of a hill and faces east across London. I get the most amazing sunrises at times though these look set to disappear during the summer months in two or three years as the trees across the road grow taller.

Valid HTML

All pages on this site should be valid HTML (normally XHTML 1.0 Strict).

I try to validate all pages with the W3C’s online validator. If you come across any pages which are invalid I’d be grateful if you would let me know. Thanks.