i think the coolest aspect of this whole scene, when you really got into it, were the comment sections sometimes. i still remember reading jay-fatboy's little absurds, or pak-9's endless ramblings on "the code window is too small". and i've kinda thought, who are these amazing, crazy people? but yes, the design aspect was the most crucial. everyone had their own style. i remember the first time i've seen some yathosho, i thought i was going to throw up. really colorful blocks, spinning around like crazy....looking back that was pretty much my introduction to op-art.
i wrote a journal, about what it should be, in my opinion. but if you mean, what is a deviantART, it's a shitload of poorly rendered abstracts with no underlying meanings, lots of manga characters, emo people cutting themselves, submitting things to the wrong category and whining from the old-school guys when things were different, like me. oh and tits sometimes. don't forget tits.