What websites would you want to remember?
December 6, 2005 9:01 PM   Subscribe

What websites would you write yourself a note to remember if your entire memory of the internet was about to be erased?

You are you (your age, your level of intelligence, your knowledge of technology and web terminology, your interests). Unfortunately, your entire memory of ever visiting any website, or hearing about one, is about to be erased. But wait, there’s good news. The mad scientist that is about to erase part of your memory gives you a pen and paper and says that you may write yourself a list of websites, with short descriptions, that will be given to your soon to be internet-knowledge-less self. What do you write down?

Bear in mind that I’m not talking about the graduate-level sites that you may link to on Mefi now, but kindergarten level stuff. Sites that are the building blocks/cornerstones of being a citizen of the worldwide web.

Finally, this is not merely an open-ended chatty question that doesn't offer a problem to be solved, but an attempt to create a list that can be used as a means of introducing an (almost) complete novice to the internet.
posted by ND¢ to Computers & Internet (32 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: For example:

Metafilter: a community weblog
Google: a search engine
Wikipedia: a community written free encyclopedia
The Onion: a satirical news source
Pitchfork: indie music reviews
IMDB: internet movie database
posted by ND¢ at 9:03 PM on December 6, 2005

Not to be meta-meta or anything, but... Ask.MeFi.

Plus Google/GMail, Facebook (I'm in college), AIM.com, Snopes, The Straight Dope, Wikipedia. But obviously #1 is Google.

Hope these fit your guidelines.
posted by SuperNova at 9:04 PM on December 6, 2005

lol, beat by OP. Well those ARE the backbone I suppose.
posted by SuperNova at 9:05 PM on December 6, 2005

What can you tell me about this novice?
posted by deadfather at 9:14 PM on December 6, 2005

Besides the already mentioned:

Yahoo! - still a good source for general services (TV listings, games, and miscellany) even if I don't use the search.

Metacritic - compiled reviews of... things.

del.icio.us - A way to organize things as I discover it all, as well as share and search for more.

Livejournal - *shrug*
posted by ckolderup at 9:16 PM on December 6, 2005

Google Scholar: for finding academic papers
Trade Me*: to buy stuff (but, self, you wasted a LOT of time here, when you should have been working)
del.icio.us: for storing and sharing bookmarks (also a dev.io.us stealer of time)
Where applicable, I'd also include in the descriptions my usernames and passwords too, so as not to lose my entire history.

*like a junior eBay, self is a Kiwi.
posted by Pigpen at 9:19 PM on December 6, 2005

Easy -- only one -- Internet Archive .
posted by ericb at 9:20 PM on December 6, 2005

Response by poster: What can you tell me about this novice?
posted by deadfather at 9:14 PM PST on December 6

Late twenties. College graduate. Professional. Hasn't had a computer since 2000, and never really spent much time on the internet. Says things like, "I could surf the internet at work, but there is nothing interesting on there". In their defense, that comment may have been made despite knowing it was not true. Likes music, movies, etc. Follows politics.
posted by ND¢ at 9:26 PM on December 6, 2005

My own. The links to everything else I might ever need are there.
posted by Dreama at 9:28 PM on December 6, 2005

This just breaks my brain. He's never said "Boy, I wonder who that actor was -- I know it's on the tip of my tongue" or "Oh, I couldn't quite hear those lyrics . . . and I want to know the name/artist of that song" or "Gee, I wish they made a special 9:19 edition of the news just for me"?

He's never had any time to kill at work?
posted by booksandlibretti at 9:40 PM on December 6, 2005

Says things like, "I could surf the internet at work, but there is nothing interesting on there."

One word.


/me rubs hands together, congratulates self for job well done.
posted by frogan at 9:49 PM on December 6, 2005 [1 favorite]


It sums up the internet completely. (IMO)
posted by blue_beetle at 10:10 PM on December 6, 2005

wait, never mind. That's not it. it's Cat-scan.com.

posted by blue_beetle at 10:11 PM on December 6, 2005

Sites that are the building blocks/cornerstones of being a citizen of the worldwide web.

Suck.com. Seriously. One of the first and smartest weblogs, its skeptically enthusiastic take on all things Web-related was dead-on-target 99% of the time, and yes, those essays are still amazingly relevant today. It's a great starting point for someone interested in learning about "cornerstones" of the Web.
posted by mediareport at 10:24 PM on December 6, 2005

I think bloglines.com would just about cover it for me.
posted by Mike C. at 10:32 PM on December 6, 2005

The only website I would be absolutely devastated to lose now that I've found it: postsecret
posted by Ugh at 10:43 PM on December 6, 2005

Del.icio.us/rossination, if we're being cheeky. Del.icio.us if we're not. I'd describe it as a way of seeing what other people think is cool on the Web.
posted by rossination at 10:55 PM on December 6, 2005

Google is the primary color of the web. You don't need to remember anything else.
posted by ori at 11:29 PM on December 6, 2005

ori writes "You don't need to remember anything else"

Lots of stuff either can't be searched for, doesn't appear in google, or appears somewhere around page 68 on even a very specific search. Look at how many times MetaTalk threads are asking for help finding something that has been posted to the front page.

Back on topic: My del.icio.us pages for sure plus the couple dozen things on my everyday bookmark that don't appear on del.

Gmail x8
Schlock Mercenary
The Cellar
Dream host control panel
Monkey filter
Dodge Forums
Special Stage
Best of Craigslist
Canadian woodworking forum.
The Old New Thing
posted by Mitheral at 1:04 AM on December 7, 2005

This is easy, as I'm looking at my Firefox link bar with them all. This is a nice way to kep your top 8 or so handy.

Google News
Ask Metafilter
Boing Boing
Pirate Bay (yikes - just for Daily Show torrents here is OZ, OK?)
posted by Dag Maggot at 1:35 AM on December 7, 2005

I'd start with Mahir and work my way from there.
posted by holloway at 2:05 AM on December 7, 2005

Suck.com was the most awesome thing ever. I once came this close >< to losing a job because i couldn't keep from reading it at work.br>
gizmodo.com (and engadget too)
posted by oddman at 5:06 AM on December 7, 2005

Response by poster: Is there a reason that people haven't listed things like:

Something Awful
Daily Kos
Little Green Footballs

I hear these mentioned in passing on Mefi often. You don't want to remember that they exist if your internet memory is erased?
posted by ND¢ at 5:07 AM on December 7, 2005

Not at all at the "graduate level", but summing up the internet nicely:
Strong Bad emails
Cats in sinks
posted by easternblot at 8:10 AM on December 7, 2005

In addition to everything already listed, what about things like Lifehacker that help with productivity and have useful tips, or since he's into politics, news sites like the washington post or The NY Times or even Slate? DesignSponge, ProductDose, Yuppster, Mighty Goods are all fun shopping or design-oriented sites that help pass the time. Tiny Mix Tapes Automatic Mixtape Generator is highly entertaining. Um, that's all I can think of right now. Oh wait, Questionable Content is addictive.
posted by echo0720 at 8:11 AM on December 7, 2005

ND¢ writes "You don't want to remember that they exist if your internet memory is erased?"

Yes. I also won't be writing down the link to tubgirl or the goat guy.
posted by Mitheral at 8:11 AM on December 7, 2005

Craigslist, eBay, Amazon, Dustedmagazine, Popmatters, Mininova, Zeropaid, Dustygroove, Forced Exposure, Ernie B's Reggae, Turntablelab, The Giant Peach, Sourceforge, Home of the Underdogs, KLOV, Allgame, GameRankings, GameFAQs (okay, the last few are all video game sites, and the ones before that are mostly places that sell records).

Plus a bunch of stuff folks have already mentioned. I hope the first three are useful, anyway.
posted by box at 8:28 AM on December 7, 2005

This to That
How to glue things together/what glue to use.
Kevin Kelly's Cool Tools Just what it says.
The Umbrella Project Amazing dress made out of umbrellas.
Many of the best links I've found through Not Martha
Cooking for engineers
posted by BoscosMom at 11:57 AM on December 7, 2005

del.icio.us or Google, easily.. you can find everything that's great from there.
posted by wackybrit at 12:13 PM on December 7, 2005

Ebay - Everything else would follow naturally :)

The constant is developing the 'Find It' mentality - give someone a big cheap mall and they'll soon learn how to make use of resources available.

Telling them they are about to walk into the largest libary they could imagine and to go look up a book presumes they A) read and B) want to.
posted by DrtyBlvd at 12:41 PM on December 7, 2005

Like Dreama, I would write down my own website.
posted by rhapsodie at 1:45 PM on December 7, 2005

Response by poster: Because this post just dropped off the AskMe front page, I suppose that this is as good a time as any to thank all those who posted in it for their advice. I plan to take a look at all the websites that I don't recognize, and pass on those that I think would appeal to the novice internet user that I am trying to welcome to the web. I will keep tabs on this thread through my 'My Comments' page, so if people want to add more, I promise that it will be read. Thanks again for all your help.
posted by ND¢ at 2:03 PM on December 7, 2005

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