Sunday, July 27, 2014

Favorite Bookmarks

Dear George,
We didn’t buy a home computer until 2004.  We were one of the last – maybe the last --of our friends and acquaintances to do so.  Because I used a computer at work all day, I decided I shouldn’t repeat that activity at home too.  That was silly. Fortunately Katja went out and bought an Apple.  Now I spend more time at the computer than anyplace else except sleeping.  I can’t imagine what I used to do in my spare time.  And I can’t imagine how I even survived without a computer’s assistance.  Like practically everybody else, I use it to keep in touch with acquaintances, check the weather, pick movies or TV shows to watch, find out travel directions, store and manipulate photos, get airline tickets and make motel reservations, check campsite availability at state parks, practice line dancing, watch Patti Page and Groucho Marx, buy stuff, and retrieve information about any topic in the universe.

There was only one website in 1991, but there were 23,500 by 1995.  As of today (July 27), it’s estimated that there are over 1,013,000,000 websites on the Internet.  This means that if you visit a thousand sites per day, it will take you 2,775 years to get to all of them (and, of course, there will be a lot more by then if the Internet and/or the world still exists).

Probably every user has a unique set of websites that they frequent which reflect their their interests and purposes.  Because some of these might be of interest to others, I thought I’d make a list of some of the websites that I have bookmarked on my computer.  I’ve put these in three groupings as follows.

(1) Hugely Popular Websites.  These are sites that get tons of usage and that many people including myself visit regularly.  I’ll just mention some of these briefly here: google, yahoo, bing, youtube, facebook, wikipedia, amazon, ebay, craigslist, groupon, expedia, travelocity, orbitz, flickr, cnn, nytimes, google maps, google news, huffingtonpost,

(2)  My Favorite Bookmarks.  Right now I have about 490 websites bookmarked on my computer.  Aside from the ultra-popular sites listed above, here are my personal favorites (many of which I’ve run across in the course of doing this blog): 

  • Charity evaluations:  Charity Navigator, Information regarding accountability and transparency, financial performance, revenues, expenses breakdown, and overall rating.  Remarkably helpful.
  • City statistics:  Detailed information for U.S. cities and small towns, e.g, income, education, race, employment, weather, air polution, water systems, cell phones, sex offenders, home sales, etc.   Practically everything you might want to know about towns or cities.  (also see Sperling’s Best Places,
  • Gallup Poll:  Current and past Gallup Poll results on politics, economy, well-being, and world.
  • Games:  Card, word, sports, arcade, brain games, etc. (my favorite is Spider Solitaire). 
  • Historical events:  News and events, history and government, science and health, business, etc., organized by year. 
  • Medical: health information and medical news for consumers and professionals on just about everything.
  • Menominee and Marinette news:  Online edition of local twin cities newspaper. 
  • Menominee county biographies:  Menominee County, Michigan: Surnames.  Biographical information for a hundred or so prominent Menominee County residents in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (including my grandfather, V.A. L. Sr.). 
  • Menominee county history:  (search book title in Google).  "Centennial History of Menominee County" by E. S. Ingalls (1876), 76 pp.  Lumbering, government, finance, education, religion, business, farming, etc., in Menominee County in the 1800's. 
  • Movie reviews:  Internet Movie Database.  Movies (current and past), TV, Celebrities, Indie News.  (Also see: Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic, Movie Review Intelligence, and QuickTime Movie Trailers)
  • Nextdoor: Allows you to share useful information with people in your immediate neighborhood or community (plus sell stuff, ask questions, seek lost dogs, etc.). 
  • Quotations:  Thousands of quotations, organized by authors and topics.
  • Radio stations:  Free Internet radio and video stations.  (also Itunes radio) 
  • Reviews of local businesses: Members’ recommendations about everything from restaurants to yoga instructors. 
  • Rhyming dictionary:  Rhyming dictionary and thesaurus.  Includes Shakespeare quotes, quizzes, "Great documents", and more. 
  • State rankings:  U.S. Census, The 2012 Statistical Abstract: State Rankings.  States ranked by age, income, race and ethnicity, health statistics, education, crime, traffic fatalities, etc. 
  • Run maps:  Map My Run.  Enables you to map a walking, running, or driving route in your location of interest, with information about mileage, bike paths, traffic, weather, etc. 
  • Travel reviews:  Information and reviews for hotels, vacation rentals, restaurants, and local destinations. 
  • Weather forecasts: Daily, hourly, weekly, monthly, etc., forecasts plus weather tips and news.  
  • Website stats:  Alexa, The Web Information Company.  Information about popularity of web-sites including national and world ranking, who goes there, links, etc.

(3) Other Interesting Places.  Of course, one discovers lots of different websites while looking into this or that.  Here are some additional sites of particular interest: 

  • Art:  Collections, artists artworks. 
  • Cincinnati news:  News, sports, things to do, etc., from the Cincinnati Enquirer.  
  • Collections:  Collections of images, books, film, and audio, centered on the surprising, the strange, and the beautiful.   
  • Football: official site of the National Football League; in-depth team pages for all teams. 
  • Googlefight:  Allows you to compare the number of Google results for any two keyword searches. 
  • Health:  Health topics from A to Z from the US Dept. of Health and Human Services.  (Also see;;
  • How-to info: how-to articles from professionals and users on a wide range of topics. 
  • Humor:  A fake news source that presents satirical, laugh-out-loud stories on politics, entertainment, sports, business, etc.  (also see theChive; Cracked; Break; CollegeHumor) 
  • NYC images:  NYC Municipal Archives.  Over 870,000 images (photos, maps, motion picture and audio records) related to New York City.
  • Photography:  Images listed by photographer. 
  • Pinboard: An online pinboard where people post collections of things. 
  • Politics: News, columns, videos, candidate blogs, etc.  (also see DailyKos, ThinkProgress;;;,
  • State parks (camping):  America's Parks.  All of America's park resources in one easy to find location. 
  • Topics of all sorts:   Digital Public Library of America: based on documents, photos, etc., from the country's libraries, museums, and archives; gives virtual exhibits on myriad topics (e.g., Boston sports temples). 
  • U.P.:  Upper Peninsula Michigan history, stories, information, etc. 
  • Urban maps:  Mapping America: Every City, Every Block.  Local data from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey showing community and neighborhood distributions for race and ethnicity, income, housing, same-sex couples, and education.
  • White House:  Obama White House website, with news, photos, topics and issues, White House daily schedule, etc. 
  • Ted talks:  Ted: Ideas Worth Spreading.  "Riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world" (technology, entertainment, science, global issues, etc.). 

O.K., now I have to go off and do a Google search.  Fortunately there are a billion plus websites left to discover.

G-mail Comments
-Donna D (7-27):  omg that's a lot of websites, david.  wow.  donna

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