The cat that gazed up at you when you opened the Portrait of our Community page, (where people could post their bios), was inspired by a joke that got going when the community first did. In our early eager enquiries of each other, it seemed as if everyone loved cats, spoke French and played the piano. This led to the paragraph in Amy's FAQ in which, in answer to the question 'What kinds of people post here?', her answer was:
"All kinds. Though some people, who take pleasure from generalizing, say we all speak French, play the piano and own a cat."
Its still there.
Being the exception in all three ways, I pored over Nicola Bayley's cat illustrations in The Patchwork Cat when I was drawing this cat.
The cat header prompted Amy to make it possible for people to have their cursor change into a tiny cat's head when you logged onto the bios board. The point of the cursor was one of its ears!
There had always been some form of 'Portrait of our Community' from the early beginnings of the site, firstly just threads that got going by people asking each other where they lived and so on, and then a database that Kathleen Grant (Kaf) put up. This board that superceeded them in early 1999 used the ordinary board software, only with the 'reply' facility turned off, so that people could add their own bios as individual stand-alone posts.