In the fall of 1999, this month's Web Site Of The Month designer was touring Europe with a couple of friends. They were on a mission: to find a legendary men's room in England where there is an open, grated floor and no urinals.
During their Homeric odyssey, their senses became finely tuned to appreciate plumbing fixtures of every breed. They encountered many unusual forms of plumbing fixtures; Europe has many ancient and unique fixtures that Americans generally don't find in local restrooms. They began to take pictures of some of the more interesting urinals they found.
Back in San Francisco, when they returned to their jobs in the IT industry, the friends decided to chronicle their journey in the form of a Web site -- Urinal Dot Net. The site, www.urinal.net, which began life in February 2000 as a tongue-in-cheek expression of their travels, eventually grew. And grew.
In August of 2000, it was featured on "Internet Tonight" of ZDTV. Maxim Magazine covered the site in March of 2001, and there were some radio and newspaper appearances as well. Now, Urinal Dot Net has become PM's Web Site of the Month.
As the rest of the dot-coms are going down the tubes (pun most definitely intended), Urinal Dot Net is thriving. Every day, people submit pictures of urinals they have encountered on their travels.
Photos on the site include the urinal aboard the International Space Station, urinals from the Millennium Dome in London, a 290-ft trough for the New York Marathon and many others. Chances are, you may have even used one of the urinals pictured. (Don't scoff, ladies -- haven't you ever seen a female urinal?) Visitors can sign up for a Urinal Dot Net newsletter, or view the Top Five Urinals from around the world.
Despite the success of the site, it is still a noncommercial venture. Webmaster Joe U. Rinator (this is obviously not his name, he prefers to remain anonymous) will not sell ads on the site. The reason for this is based on the Webmasters' deeply-held beliefs that the Internet should not be exploited (the only items available for sale are Urinal Dot Net T-shirts). To this end, Urinal Dot Net is working to provide you with the most comprehensive collection of pictures and information related to urinals.
If you have any additions or suggestions for this site, please contact the Webmasters at firstname.lastname@example.org.