The Best Fifty Web Sites You Don't Know About


Search and Reference
Wikibooks: A giant collection of textbooks that anyone can edit. Over 26K modules at the time of this writing.
HyperHistory: A visual timeline of history; click on a link and you're taken to a whole new panorama of information.
oSkope: A visual search engine that lets you search and organize items from different web servies.
Digital History: For anyone who wants more information on U.S. history, this site is the place to look. Essays, primary sources, and even a space where you can ask a question of a professional historian - pretty cool.
Retrievr: Truly experimental, Retrievr is a VERY visual search engine, in that you can actually draw a sketch of what image you're looking for.



Reading and Writing
Project Gutenberg: A huge database of free downloadable books - I get a lot of my books from this collection.
ManyBooks: Tons of free books for your iPod; anything from classics to science fiction.
Writeboard: Sharable, web-based text documents that allow you to write solo or get together with other people to collaborate.
Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL): A fantastic array of over 200 free resources for improving your writing. Includes an updated MLA style guide.
LibraryThing: Share what you're reading with other people and connect with others that read similar books.



Entertainment and Video
YOuConvertIt: Upload any media format and change it into another media format absolutely for free - and without installing any kind of software.
Internet Movie Poster Awards: Get the first look at the very latest movie posters here - archives go back to 1913.
Miro: Free, open source Internet TV and video player. Play any video file, download YouTube videos, and a whole lot more. Free dowload.
Animoto: Make your own video using your own images and music with professional looking effects.
Internet Movie Script Database: If you're looking for a movie script, this is the first place to look. A great way to get another point of view on your favorite film.


Web Applications and Tools
Mint: Free and automatic money management - a great way to be on top of your finances.
Popurls: One of my favorite sites; a compilation of the most popular social bookmarking sites with constant updates.
Jottit: Make a website just by entering in your text; you can customize it as much as you want.
Tripit: Organize your travel plans into one master online itinerary with everything you need - a fantastically useful service.
AmCharts: Free customizable Flash charts and graphics - really nice looking images here to use for your presentations or projects.


Health and Lifestyle
The Daily Plate: Track what you're eating and how much you're exercising; you can also get free recipes and weight loss tips here.
Fitday:You can start your own free diet journal here, and track your daily food, exercise, weight loss, and fitness goals.
SparkPeople: A completely free personalized diet and healthy lifestyle program, including free menu plans, calorie counters, and much more.
Gimme20: Find a workout that works for you.
SugarStats: An easy way for diabetics to track and manage their sugar intake.


Shopping and Travel
Woot: One of the best places to find deals on the web; mostly gadgets and technology-related deals here.
RetailMeNot: Find coupons from for online and "real" stores.
ThisNext: Save what you find around the web at ThisNext, a social shopping community.
VirtualTourist: This is a fantastic place to pick up real "been there, done that" tips from seasoned travellers around the world.
FlightAware: A free live flight tracker; you can view and track the activity of any private or commercial flight here, as well as get printable airport information.


Music and Multimedia
Last.fm: Free streaming radio stations of any music or artist you might be looking for.
HypeMachine: Listen to the music that people are talking about on the Web.
Gnoosic: Discover new music that you didn't even know you liked.
Miro: Free open source internet TV and video player.
Magnatune: All the music you want to listen to for free.


News and Information
Topix: One of the best search engines out there for news and information. (You can learn more about Topix in my article titled Find Breaking News with Topix).
Popurls: One of my favorite sites for getting quick information from a large variety of sources online.
BoingBoing: An exceedingly eclectic array of information gathered from all over the Web.
Techmeme: One of the best places on the Web to get breaking technology news.
Drudge Report: The Drudge Report is a great site to find news that is off the beaten track; he also tends to be the first one to break really big news items.


Productivity and New Media
Treedolist: A hierarchical organizer for your to-do list and tasks.
YouConvertIt: Convert any file format to any other file format without downloading any kind of software, completely for free.
Scriblink: an online whiteboard that you can use to collaborate in realtime with other people.
Twitter: A mini-blogging application that you can use to journal your thoughts and ideas.
Netvibes: A starting page for the Web; you can personalize your Netvibes to your unique preferences.


Fun and Games
Qbesq: Draw beautiful shapes and symbols in any colors that you want.
Orisinal: A beautifully designed gaming site; parents love this one.
PaperToys: Hundreds of free custom-designed paper models that you can print out and fold yourself.
Web Sudoku: Play Sudoku for free with literally thousands of different combinations.
Miniclip: Tons of cute animated games for kids and adults.

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