Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Time Magazine Best 50 Websites of 2008

Time, a noted magazine of our time, has produced an entertaining and useful listing of its views of the best of the online world. These websites fall into categories Time describes as Advice & Facts, Info & Gossip, Handy Tools, Fun & Games, and Hobbies & Interests.

Below are a few of the sites I've checked out & recommend.
http://www.iliketotallyloveit.com/: According to the site's publisher, this site " allows users to publish and share products with the broader public which they find cool, innovative, exceptionally beautiful, or just weird. Included with every item is a link to an online shop where it can be purchased." According to me, this site is a good stop for ideas for gifts for the upcoming gift season. I found a few good ideas rather quickly here by clicking on the Toys link.

http://www.omiru.com/: Omiru is "a style and shopping guide dedicated to real style for real people. We cover figure flattery, fashion trends, and an assortment of articles aimed at making style accessible to all." The site has an exhaustive Archives section dating back to March 2005 as well as links to dozens of online sites for buying items or researching fashion trends.
http://psychcentral.com/: Psych Central is an incredibly useful website for gaining more information about diagnosis, treatment, and helpful resources for a host of mental health issues for adults & children.http://www.geni.com/: Geni is an interactive online site where a person can create a family tree. The site allows for other members of the family to join a tree for discussion, adding photos & videos, and reminders of birthdays & other anniversaries. Best of all, the site restricts viewing & editing of a tree to those authorized by a tree's creator.
http://www.searchme.com/: This site offers an intriguing alternative to the Yahoo! & Google search engines. Searchme "lets you see what you’re searching for. As you start typing, categories appear that relate to your query. Choose a category, and you’ll see pictures of web pages that answer your search." Pun intended, this one has to be seen to be believed.http://cylinders.library.ucsb.edu/index.php: The Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project created by the University of California, Santa Barbara, Department of Special Collections is a collection of "cylinder recordings, the first commercially produced sound recordings" which provide "a snapshot of musical and popular culture in the decades around the turn of the 20th century." Browse the collection to hear recordings from as early as 1893 about the first cars & airplanes, about World War I or the Civil War, or songs highlighting individual instruments like a zither or a cimbalom (which evidently is complex zither played especially in Hungary). The recordings of speeches found here may be of particular interest to history buffs or history teachers as they feature historical figures such as Teddy Roosevelt & William H. Taft.
http://www.lookybook.com/index.php: LookyBook, according to its site, "allows you to look at picture books in their entirety—from cover to cover, at your own pace. We know that nothing will replace the magic of reading a book with your child at bedtime, but we aim to replace the overwhelming and frustrating process of finding the right books for parents and their kids." The site is a useful tool for libraries, book sellers or individual readers hoping to preview books before purchase. This site allows searching by specific author or illustrator, by subject or genre, or by keyword. If searching by keyword, though, I would suggest trying, for example, both rabbit and rabbits if you are looking for a book about this animal in the family Leporidae. Using "rabbit" finds six books, but using "rabbits" finds only three.
http://digitalvaults.org/: A creation of the National Archives, this site contains digitized views of 1,200 documents in the National Archives collection. The content of this site is impressive on its own, but the interactivity of the site is what makes it special. I feel silly trying to explain this, actually -- give the site a look to see what I'm talking about.

The entire list can be found here: http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/0,28757,1809858,00.html. The list is particularly enlightening & useful in that it often offers other suggestions of websites similar in scope to those selected as the best.

Let me know if you have any other suggestions or questions.


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