The History of Annika's

Many people have asked me over the years how I came up with the name Annika's. Well, let's take a walk through time, back to 1992 when Star Trek the Next Generation was on television. I had been into the classic Star Trek for years. I had only ever seen them in reruns. I thought, what was this? As I took the journey through time with another Enterprise. I became addicted and started collecting everything to do with the show.

Not long after, we got a proper computer with net access and Windows 95. I had taken every computer course they offered in school. I was taught to program at home, so this was right up my alley. My father became addicted to chatrooms, and I watched and picked on him for it. I had also even entered the BRAND NEW at the time, Quarks Bar. A 3-D chat from Star Trek and Microsoft. It was horrible! Everyone was complaining about how slow it was. On a dial-up 19k, and a whomping 8mbs of RAM. If it came out now when computers have 512 RAM and DSL, it would rock, but sadly as before with Classic Star Trek, it came before its time.

It would be years before I would join the chat room as a "regular." I did, however, peek in from time to time. Mostly I used AOL AIM to chat with people. Those were the nice days when spam was a thing of the future, as were lies, nukers, flooders, and simmers. I looked up many people who shared the same interests as me and developed a buddy list full of Trekkies. I remain in contact with to this very day, and several are members of Annika's.

When my father stopped chatting was when I decided to pick it up. One day I was speaking to a friend on AIM, and she invited me into the Original Starfleet Lounge (also referred to as PDE Paramount Digital Entertainment) in MS Chat. MS Chat was a massive change from the lame lounge webpage interface. I entered and got picked on because of the nick I used at the time. I remember who picked on me as well, however, I won't mention names here. She had entered the chat room as Annika. Annika was Seven of 9's human name. Everyone warmed right up to her talking, etc. I admit I was jealous at the time. We talked a bit and left to return chatting on AIM. I asked if she minded if I used the name Annika in chat, she said no.

I became rather friendly with the "regulars." After which, of course, many blue screens. I had learned later that someone was "nuking" me. I immediately began researching this "nuking." I read every webpage I could find on it and installed every patch I could. After all, the machine at the time wasn't mine. I had to take care of it. So I did to the point of paranoia. Firewalls, patches, port changes, Nuke Naber, IP tracers, virus scanners, the works.

Annika took form when an ex-cyber boyfriend of mine brought in a macro. It was beautiful and basic. Three hearts with the word HUG in the middle, then three more hearts. I was speechless. Being the artist geek I am, I copied it and adapted it into so many forms it blew everyone away. Soon everyone in the chat room was hugging and welcoming everyone who entered. It became a warm place for everyone. After all, who doesn't like to be hugged as a welcome to a new place?

I decided at this point to make a web page after all MSN was advertising they had free webpages for others. I was just going to use it as a personal thing, as I didn't want to give out my email address to SO many people. Funny now, I lost count of all the people who have it. I started the webpage with the basics in mind. So I named it after my "name" at the time, Annika. No one knew my real name wasn't Annika. Only when I trusted them did I allow a select few to know my name was Amy. After all, I didn't know anyone in chat by their first names, and I learned from my father's experience that not everyone online tells the truth.

I became a protector of many in the chat room. I ended up having four online daughters from all over the world, who were very naive of the world around them, and we did have several people in chat that were into underage ladies. One is still hanging around in the chats to this very day under the same name.

Throughout the years, I updated my web page with things I learned and or thought others should know. I learned more online than I ever have in school, and much of it still applies to this very day. I found it a great way to share my knowledge and talents. It feels nice to talk to the old "regulars" from chat to see how much they have learned. I'm finding many aren't keeping up with the advancing technology. Sadly to those few, keeping a computer updated and upgraded is keeping up. I have yet to come across a person from the lounge that knows what a robots.txt file is, and that's sad because most own their own domain as well.

In the beginning, members who joined I invited, and it grew from there. Now, we have over 7000 members who in turn help others as well. My goal has been reached and continues to be expanded upon. I update it often as I still wish to help others out there. No one should have to go through what I have been through, and I hope to help as many as I can avoid the hassle.

So though my web page started to be of my interest, it expanded from Star Trek to protection, saving money, and earning money from home. As I have changed over the years, as has my web page.

At one point, Annika's was renamed to Ariel's. The reason for this is I had changed completely. Not only had my nickname but my outlook on life, and I had made many an enemy for the choices I made over the lounge. Annika was dead and deep in hiding. So I decided as should the name be, but as always, life comes full circle. I then started using my real name Amy and changed Ariel's to Amy's. Now all this time later, I have decided why to fight it. Annika's it is. I have since come out of hiding, and I no longer mind when people call me Annika. I use to be bothered because I wanted others to know I had changed, but they do know no matter what nick I use that I have come a long way.

Annika's is my pride and joy. I have put my heart and soul into this site. I love saving people money, and when I hear someone paid a company for what I provide for free, my heartaches. I can't stand when people get ripped off. Saving money to me is a joy like no other. Why? Because there is no greater gift than the ability to help others in their time of need. I have upset many companies by telling people the truth about them and faced legal action more times than I can count, but to me, it's worth it because, above all else, truth should prevail. Annika's is the most legitimate source of  Surveys on the internet. It's my goal for it to remain that way. A haven for all who wish to work from home or just earn some extra money to get by. Not everyone can work in public, and at one point in my life, neither could I.

Doing the many things, I shared on Annika's helped pay my bills and helped others earn enough to pay for their medication. (I've received many communications about this.) It has lifted my heart to know that what I created was such a blessing not just to myself but to others. While dealing with all this, in the background, I was taking care of my elderly father. He was a computer nut, so it was nice to be able to turn to him for feedback from time to time. My father was a big part of Annika's. He was a large part of many of the significant decisions. What to add, delete, etc. So much so that Annika's Facebook Fan Page cover has my father's handwriting. He was honored to be a part of the progression.

My father died in the summer of 2019. Things pretty much came to a halt. I found myself unable to add the many new sites I was discovering on a daily basis. I would load a page to work on and stare at it till the end of the day. The HTML appeared to me as gibberish. The love I had for my precious "Annika's" was gone. I was so full of grief and despair that I think hatred started to grow. All the time I spent updating instead of spending it with my father. ETC. How the excuses flowed. I had plans to sue the hospital and with the winnings, expand the website. Again, something my father would have loved.

Now enter 2020. Faced with a global pandemic and boredom sitting in, I decided it was past time to bring Annika's out of the shadows and into the light. I purchased Annika's her own domain! This is a massive step on so many levels. For most people, it would be nothing more than a few clicks of a mouse and payment transactions. But I found myself in tears. I KNEW I couldn't purchase the domain alone. But I had no choice as circumstances changed around me. Immediately upon purchase, the flood gates opened. My father should have been here for this step. Just as he was every step of the way. From MSN to the ORG.

Thank you for reading our history. I'm honored you took the time to read this.

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