Web After Five
Did you know that Elly May Clampett's portrayer, Donna Douglas, was Miss Louisiana in 1957? That Jethro's real-life dad, Max Baer Sr., was once heavyweight boxing champion of the world? That Nancy Culp, portrayer of the exceeding prim Miss Hathaway, came out of the closet at age 67? That Raymond Bailey made some 300 TV appearances before becoming Mr. Drysdale? That Irene Ryan (Granny) established a scholarship fund that's still in existence? That Buddy Ebsen somehow lost the role of the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz? Or that the show ran for nine seasons?
These are just some things we learned at the First and Still Only Unofficial Beverly Hillbillies World Wide Web Site. http://www.mindspring.com/~artemis/hillbill.html Visit to load up on Clampett minutiae or just to hear the theme song.
It probably won't surprise you to know that the Web is literally littered with songs "sung to the tune of" this classic theme. The most popular of these seems to be "The Battle of the Bobbit Hillbillies," an adults-only ditty located in any number of places, including http://www.cyberspc.mb.ca/~goombah/Entertainment/joke4.htm From there, try the "Computer Engineer's Hillbillies" song at http://www.smu.edu/~mbonilla/stories/computers/computerhillbillies.html Then there's the Jim and Tammy Bakker theme: http://comedy.clari.net/rhf/jokes/87/3696.html And, well, you get the picture.


But the cackling idiot's creator, Calvert de Forrest, is alive, kicking, and documenting his improbable late-life comedy career on his Web site. http://www.calvertdeforest.com/index.html See him posing with Playboy playmates, read his "Cheap Advice" column (hilarious) and theater reviews (ridiculous), and--perhaps most important--see his Buddy Holly-at-90 mug on every page. The site's only drawback is, unfortunately, a big one: Clicking the link to a .wav file of Larry Bud's trademark cackle leads to what could be the most disappointing "File Not Found" message on the Web.


Yes, nothing can quite surpass the satisfaction of knowing that you--little old, measly, unknown you--were born on the exact same day of the exact same month as a bona fide celebrity! If until now you've denied yourself this level of fulfillment, point your little-person Web browser to Entertainment World and take the Celebrities' Birthdays link. http://home1.gte.net/foxy1/
Within seconds, you'll know which superstar shares your birthday--a fact you'll doubtless want to share with ALL YOUR FRIENDS. Great for friends' birthdays, too: Imagine their excitement when you tell them, "Hey, not only is this your birthday, but much more importantly, it's also Mariah Carey's! Think we can squeeze her name onto your cake?"


Hey, what's funnier than sound files that make it seem like your PC is buying the farm? Phil Koopman's Dependable WAV Sound Archive is packed with great little sound bites, featuring movie and cartoon characters (like Bullwinkle Moose, Laurel and Hardy, Marvin the Martian, even Krusty the Clown) bemoaning various mishaps and explosions. http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~koopman/depndwav/index.html Attach them to various Windows events (sorry, we don't have space here to tell you how), and you've got one paranoia-inducing PC. Or you can spread cyberdread (and laughs) by attaching them to e-mail messages. This may be one of the first collections of sound files we've found that's both fun and moderately useful.


Stanley Kubrick's 1964 film Dr. Strangelove--a tale of power-mad, weapon-obsessed leaders following their ids to worldwide nuclear destruction, with Peter Sellers playing three of the starring roles--still packs 'em in at out-of-the-mainstream theaters all over the country and the world. If you haven't seen the movie, we heartily recommend you do so. If you've seen it lots of times, by all means refresh your memory on the Web. You can stock up on images and .wav files (including the classic "Mein fuhrer, I can walk!") at http://www.lehigh.edu/~pjl2/kubrick/films/strangelove/ which is a subset of a Kubrick fan's Web site. You can also read an excellent review/analysis of the film at http://www.voyagerco.com/criterion/indepth.cgi?strangelove Or you can ignore this entire tip--but if you do, you'll have to answer to the Coca-Cola Bottling Company.

THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY http://www.alcyone.com/max/lit/devils

Ambrose Bierce formulated the final version of this biting dictionary more than 80 years ago, but it still packs a painfully funny one-two punch. To wit: "BRIDE, n. A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her," and "PRAY, v. To ask that the laws of the universe be annulled in behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy." You can find other sites with more background on Bierce--and even other e-texts of the Dictionary--but this one is our favorite. OTAKU WORLD http://otakuworld.com
The average American may view cartoons as Saturday morning kids' stuff, but Japanese of all ages consider cartoon manga and anime an authentic and serious literary form. Otaku World (the word otaku is used in Japanese to designate both a geek and a manga/anime enthusiast) sets itself apart from other manga appreciation sites, thanks to a search engine that scours the Web for pages on favorite characters and series, an encyclopedic assortment of links, and a great collection of desktop themes for Windows.

STARCHEFS http://www.starchefs.com

Take one of the country's top chefs; do an interview; give us the bio; and tell us about the guy/gal's restaurant, just so we know where he/she's coming from; then give us the recipes. That's the simple formula for Starchefs, where (at last count) you'll find 40+ culinary celebrities telling us how they do that foodoo that they do so well. Special sections on soups, holiday cooking, and aphrodisiacs(!), plus some yummy links, round out the menu.

THE CREOLE AND CAJUN RECIPE PAGE http://www.gumbopages.com/recipe-page.html

Chuck Taggart is a New Orleans native, transplanted in body but not in soul to L.A. His Gumbo Pages are a "musical, culinary and cultural information source" for all things Nawlins; and in this subsection he serves up recipes for gumbos, jambalayas, and home-made sausages, along with such standards as Crawfish big difference between this and many other amateur recipe collections online: Chuck knows what he's talking about.

BABY CENTER http://www.babycenter.com

Got a bun in the oven? Know someone who does? Parenting may be one of life's richest experiences, but it also represents one of its biggest responsibilities--a role for which "being too ready" simply isn't possible. Baby Center makes an excellent resource, from the moment your EPT tests positive to labor and beyond. Laid out to look as clean as you know your son will keep his room, Baby Center features informative articles, glossaries, links, shopping resources, and personalization options.

ANSWERS FROM THE COLOGNE GUY http://www.cologneguy.com

As one whiff of deodorant or aftershave will prove, even fellows who don't drench their bikini briefs in Obsession for Men use fragrance products. Todd, a chatty Certified Fragrance Sales Specialist, explains why and how fragrances work and keeps tabs on new and discontinued products. His Fragrance List rates leading brands, advises when and where to wear the scent, estimates how long it will last, objectively enumerates its components, and subjectively describes its effects. The ultimate insult: "Smells like a dentist's office." Todd supplies links to select smelly sites, from The Fragrance Foundation to Cigar World. All AFTCG lacks is a scratch-and-sniff component.

CYBERATLAS http://www.cyberatlas.com

You'll find bushels of useful Web-related info here, whether it's the latest salary profiles for the digital job market (good ammo for that raise request you're preparing) or current statistics on Net usage. Sources range from industry think tanks to the mass media--and so, accordingly, does the quality of the information. But we appreciate the quirky nature of this site's half-scholarly, half-pop-cultural approach to Web math.

MUSIC NEWSWIRE http://www.musicnewswire.com

When it comes to getting news, many of us prefer just the facts, ma'am. If that's you, then bookmark Music Newswire, a resource of pop music news from various sources (all information resides on linked sites). It's not a new idea; I-Music's News Agent, for example, culls headlines from various online music sources, too. But Newswire's extended reach (Vibe, Rolling Stone, USA Today, NME, CNN, ATN, MTV, etc.) and its practical breakdown of information set it apart. You'll find industry and label news alongside artist happenings--all with full attribution.

THE COPYRIGHT WEB SITE http://www.benedict.com

Copyright command central for all "infonauts" and "appropriationists." This generically named but surprisingly attractive site from intellectual property lawyer Benedict O'Mahoney engagingly explains everything you need to know about copyright law. Check out Busted for a history of celebrity copyright infringement cases; or browse primers on fair use, public domain, and "bleeding edge" Internet copyright issues. Give it a visit and help O'Mahoney achieve his goal of "lubricating the machinations of information delivery."

TRAVELOCITY http://www.travelocity.com

A one-stop destination for travel booking, Travelocity puts you in touch with the lowest-priced flights, car rentals, cruises, hotels, and B&Bs. A special-interest section features listings for dining, nightlife, and cultural, recreational, and sporting events. Other value-added services: 85-country currency pricing, e-mail fare watcher, language translation guide, up-to-the-minute e-mail flight paging (so you don't have to call the airport), and links to MapQuest and event ticket brokers.

MOTHER NATURE'S GENERAL STORE http://www.mothernature.com

Exclusive vitamin vendor to the Ask Dr. Weil site (the good doctor's books strongly advocate dietary supplements), Mother Nature cooks up a robust shopping experience, with more than 350 brands (including Mom Nature's own label) of vitamins, minerals, and other supposedly healthful products. The product search engine is supplemented by subject-specific sections (acne, sexual healing, etc.) and an Alternative Practitioner's Directory Search. Online ordering is secure and confidential. Free UPS shipping on orders that exceed $50; full refunds on unopened items.


If you scour the art houses and airwaves for flicks such as Scanners and Passion Fish, or if you're a fan of auteur directors like John Sayles and David Cronenberg, then visit the IFC site. Touting itself as "a real Web site for real film fans," IFC goes deep into the heart of the indie filmmaker's darkness, with program schedules that read like a straight outta Sundance lineup, online seminars on concepts and techniques, classified ads, and links to everything from film schools to film preservation sites.

ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM http://www.boston.com/gardner

A faux Roman villa in Boston serves as the showcase for this fine collection of renaissance paintings and other masterpieces of art history that were amassed by Ms. Gardner, a late-19th-century free thinker and impassioned art collector. On display are samples of exhibitions, art history notes, concert schedules, and a virtual tour of the museum's lovely gardens, all dressed up in small, slideshow-like graphics. Crime aficionados can pursue to articles on the continuing intrigue surrounding the museum's infamous 1990 art heist.

WEB SITE GARAGE http://www.websitegarage.com

You've slaved over your Web site for months. Now for some feedback from Web Site Garage. Enter your site's URL (nonframe sites only, for now). Moments later you'll be presented with a check list detailing how your site scored in load time, dead links, popularity (defined by the number of other sites with back to yours), HTML (prompting technical wrist-slaps such as, "end tag does not match any start tags"), and spelling. WSG provides some assistance gratis, but the more substantial overhauls will cost you bigger bucks. A fantastic resource.

4INTERNET.COM http://4internet.com

If you don't have time to look through the 1,983,052 returns that your search requests produce, check out this new online community of Web sites. 4Internet is a hub of 120 locations so far (expanding to 1,500, they say) all created by the 4Internet team. These specific subsites cover weather, health, parenting, cars, computer news, and just about anything else you can imagine. Find the topic that interests you from this central launch point--or the next time you want to conduct a Web search, put a 4 in your URL, as in www.4yourtopic.com.

ANTHOLOGY FILM ARCHIVES http://www.arthouseinc.com/anthology

Founded in the '60s, New York's Anthology Film Archive is world-famous for collecting, exhibiting, and promoting outstanding examples of "nonindustrial" filmmaking--what used to be called "independent" or "underground" film. This site (still under construction) already provides vital information on filmmakers like Hollis Frampton, Ron Rice, Ernie Gehr, Robert Frank, Maya Deren, Michael Snow, and Rudy Burckhardt, and it includes a vital listing of available videotapes. Another invaluable resource.

BLADE RUNNER http://www.westwood.com/games/bladerunner

The rain has been falling like a dense spittle for weeks now, and as you cruise above the metropolis in your spinner, the neon lights blur below like artist's pastels on a sidewalk." So begins the real-time CD-ROM game based on the bleak but sumptuous Ridley Scott science-fiction classic film Blade Runner. Westwood Studios, makers of the enormously popular Command & Conquer universe of games, has undertaken the Herculean task of re-creating Scott's Los Angeles, circa 2019. This dense, atmospheric promo site features music and slideshows from the CD-ROM game, and hidden somewhere onsite is a Blade Runner Theme Pack, with backgrounds, system sounds, cursors, videos, and other goodies tapping the tech-noir vein of arguably the most richly styled SF movie of all time.

ACROPHOBIA http://www.bezerk.com/acro

From the people who created the award-winning You Don't Know Jack comes Acrophobia, an online game that puts your creativity and sense of humor to the test. The action: Up to 14 people meet in a game room and attempt to come up with clever phrases based on groups of onscreen letters (acronyms) and categories. Like the lauded Jack series and Net-show, Acrophobia features original music, bright attractive graphics, and subtle and not-so-subtle humor. It's yet another example of an online game designed to bring people together--rather than isolating them further. Download required.

GAMEGIRLZ http://www.gamegirlz.com

Quake, Red Alert, Dark Reign, etc. rule here. Try to give these chicks a copy of Barbie's Virtual Makeover and you just might find yourself eating it. GameGirlz is for serious female computer gamers who want to debunk the myth of "girl games" and have fun with the male/female schism. With up-to-date news, discussion forums, games, and all the expected reviews and industry interviews, GameGirlz is a smart and flashy role model of a site. One great section called He Said, She Said pairs reviews of games, one from him and one from her.

FITNESS ONLINE http://www.fitnessonline.com

You won't find a more exhaustive online fitness resource than this new online hub. Whether you want to know how many minutes on the Stairmaster will burn off that brownie or you're looking for a new diet or you just want to subscribe to Fit Pregnancy magazine, you'll find the wherewithal here. Much of the here is repurposed from popular health mags: For instance, Shape magazine's fitness editor, Dr. Tim offers detailed answers to e-mailed questions ("Water Aerobics, should I bother?") Some of the personalized sections require membership, but the site saves the pain for the pushups--by keeping membership free of charge.

BREAKUP GIRL http://www.breakupgirl.com

Faster than a nasty e-mail, taller than a sorrow-sousing libation, able to leap relationship hurdles in a single bound: It's a dis, it's a slam--it's Breakup Girl! Let's face it: All of us, at one point or another, get dumped. It's an experience we hope we'll never go through again. But sure enough, a week or a month later, we're headed down the road to emotional ruin once more. That's when Breakup Girl flies to the rescue. If you've just been jettisoned by your erstwhile sweetie, this tongue-in-cheek comfort zone proffers words of wisdom that will keep you in stitches for the duration of your visit.

JUGGLING INFORMATION SERVICE http://www.juggling.org

The JIS tosses together the complete archives of the rec.juggling newsgroup, instructions and hints for juggling everything from the basic three balls to flaming torches, a lengthy list of films that contain juggling scenes, and even juggling software for those of us who have to settle for virtual dexterity. Thrill to the Juggling Hall of Fame, or locate a professional juggler near you to wow the audience at your next presentation.

WWW.TINFOIL.COM http://www.tinfoil.com

Recorded music has come a long way since the late 1800s. Way back then, engineers couldn't make dubs from a master, so they had to assemble multiple recorders in a room for multiple takes. Tinfoil.com is dedicated to preserving the sounds of early wax recordings. Take a trip through the history of music with copious old photos, RealAudio samples (mostly from the first decade of this century), and links. Got some wax recordings of your own? The man behind the site specializes in converting wax to disc. A rich, fascinating site and a must-see for any serious musicologist.

ALL-MUSIC GUIDE http://www.allmusic.com/amg

With 192,000 albums and 16,000 artist bios, the All-Music Guide really takes a shot at covering all music. Whether you've heard about an interesting band at a party and want to find out a little more, or you're looking for a clear breakdown of West Coast vs. East Coast rap artists, this seemingly infinite site spells out all the details. Search by album or by band name, choose from over a hundred styles of music, and uncover key genre-defining albums. Or find the key artists--by decade--within each musical category. Whew. Unlike most corporate monolithic resources, AMG reviews bootlegs, to fan sites, and features some good writing. We tried to stump the database a dozen times with arcane search requests and got detailed returns each time.

TEMP 24-7 http://www.temp24-7.com

The emergence of temporary workers has dramatically changed the way U.S. companies and individuals view labor. The phrase "Let's bring in a temp to do it" often masks the adjoining refrain: "And we won't need to pay health care!" Who are these interchangeable vertebrae in the corporate backbone? Temps have their own sarcastic voice online with the launch of this biting new weekly zine. Read gripes of the week; learn new temp terms ("glorified gopher," for example, means "any 'general office' position, all of which rank right above 'intern'"); play a hilarious Shockwave game; and forever change your nonchalant attitude when hiring a temp for the day.

1001 DESKTOP THEMES http://www.1001themes.com

Tired of staring at the same boring hourglass and slanted arrow as you whittle away precious minutes waiting for a page to load? We can't promise that these desktop themes will make you enjoy your life more than, say, a vacation would, but a little diversion and personalization never hurts. If you're new to desktop downloads, first read the site's comprehensive tutorial. Then browse the dozens of themes available here free of charge, select the one you like, download, and voila! It's Kenny from South Park! No, wait, it's Bogey! Hey, this is fun! Geez, we're geeks. Our only gripe? No thumbnails are available to preview before the download is complete.

SHOCKRAVE http://www.shockrave.com

A minor miracle of efficient programming, Macromedia's new online playground, ShockRave, features a constantly updating roster of interactive games and cartoon clips as well as several streaming audio music channels. The Toons section--which features exclusive miniepisodes of South Park, Dilbert, and Peanuts--is particularly entertaining. What's more, these clips download fast, thanks to economical animation and several different Macromedia streaming technologies. The games are just as quick (check out the addictive King Putt) and you can crank tunes from a dozen or so different music channels, organized by genre. But the real story here is the site's speed. The programmers have taken care to deliver everything in small, digestible chunks, and it pays off.

SEARCH ENGINE WATCH http://www.searchenginewatch.com

Wow. To think of all the times we've nearly bashed in our PCs after getting a kazillion returns from search engines on a simple search. This new site can prevent such catastrophes, even as it educates and entertains. Webmasters will like its technical tips; the rest of us can consult its tutorials on how to refine our searches, consult its glossary for words we don't understand, read articles rating various search engines, and put our newfound knowledge to the test. This is a tremendous resource for all Web wanderers.

NT WARE.COM http://www.ntware.com

Most computer users' eyes will glaze over while surfing this site, but if you work in an IS department and have Windows NT running on your network (or are considering deploying it), you might want to bookmark this new resource and share it with your colleagues. Striving ultimately to cull "any software ever made for Windows NT that has been released for general download," NTWare.com organizes its freeware into categories such as Server Apps, Workstation, Drivers, and even Games. Most selections include detailed specs and brief descriptions.

LAPTOP TRAVEL.COM http://www.laptoptravel.com

Nightmare Scenario #4523: You've just arrived in your hotel in Singapore and decide to log on to your company's intranet to pull up the most recent sales figures for tomorrow's presentation to the Pacific Rim partners. You reach down to connect your phone cord into the phone jack--and realize in horror that the jack doesn't fit your U.S. phone cord. Laptop Travel can help you prevent such knee-weakening episodes. This robust site sells all kinds of peripherals and adapters to guarantee you can get wired in locales where TCI means nothing. Search by country or region, read through the helpful travel tips, and rest easy on your next 20-hour flight.


First, starting in the late 1930s, it was a radio quiz show. Then, in the late 1940s, it became a book (actually, an almanac). And now, of course, it has become what just about every other publication in the world is evolving into: a Web site. We could only be talking about Information Please, the electronic incarnation of the Information Please World Almanac. http://www.infoplease.com Information Please looks great: It's organized into sensible sections, searchable on a variety of levels, and contains scads of information--there probably isn't a bet that can't be settled on its electronic pages. But like several sites we've encountered lately, it's slow--very, very slow--not only during searches, but even during transitions from one page to the next. Even so, it's faster and less expensive than going out and buying the book.


If you're into ballroom dancing, looks like the cyberplace to go is DanceScape. http://www.dancescape.com/info/index.html This site has just about all the information an accomplished dancer needs--dance news, events and contests, telecasts of dance competitions, listings of local organizations, dance publications, and more. There's even a Personals section where you can find a new partner (dance partner, that is--but who knows, maybe it will "spin" into something more!), a new costume, theme music...you name it.
Just one warning: Bring something else to do while you wait for the pages to load. Or to put it another way, while most Web sites "cha-cha" along, this one slogs along like teenagers slow-dancing to "Freebird."


Now that you've had a few days to cool off from the April Fool's prank that made you look like (dare we say it?) a fool, you're probably wondering who started all this April Fool nonsense. According to the United States Holidays Web site, published by the American Embassy in Sweden, we can blame the French. http://www.usis.usemb.se/Holidays/celebrate/april.htm After you read the history of this holiday, you can take the Celebrate link at the bottom of the page and read about others, too. But all history and no pranks makes you a dull person. Dilbert creator Scott Adams has office pranks you can play any day of the year: http://www.infowar.com/humor/humor8.html-ssi
The questionable--but so far, uncensored--ANNOY-O-MATIC enables you to anonymously send annoying e-mail to people that apparently bug the site creator: http://www.fractalcow.com/hall.htm
And at E-mail Attachment Pranks, you can find all kinds of scary things you can send to your friends to help them celebrate April Fool's Day every day. http://www.fortunecity.com/skyscraper/mozilla/196/pranks.html


Not too long ago, the arrival of April meant that you had another week to prepare for Opening Day. Now, thanks to expanded leagues and an interminable post-season play-off system, the first week of April is as many as three or four games into the season. Still, it's never too late to visit Ballparks, by Munsey & Suppes--probably the best resource, online or off, for information about ANY professional sports arena: http://www.ballparks.com/index.html
You'll find stats, history, stories, seating plans, and just about everything else about every major league ballpark ever built, past or present. The navigation can be tricky at first (don't stop clicking in the sidebar until the name of your ballpark appears), but once you get comfortable with it, you'll think, as we did, that it's one of the best-designed sites on the Web.


What's the chief regret of "first-shift" workers all over the country? Mind you, we haven't done any research into the matter (we never do any research into ANY matters), but that doesn't stop us from supposing that lots of nine-to-fivers can't stand the fact that while they toil away, THEY'RE MISSING THEIR FAVORITE SOAPS! Well, we're here to tell you that there's no need to worry--and certainly no need to learn how to program that VCR--because TVGen's Daily Soap Opera Update has got you covered. http://www.tvgen.com/soaps/
Yes, faster than you can ask, "Who's sleeping with whom?" this site delivers the complete plot summary of the day (in the last five) that you missed. Of course, the fact that this "complete plot summary" can fit in a single small paragraph of simple, disjointed sentences ought to make it clear just how empty these "daytime dramas" are; but if you're a soap fan, this irony will zip over your head like the Concorde, and you'll be happy for the update.


Seems to us you have two choices: You can spend another spring and summer looking at your ratty brown yard, or you can try to grow just enough green--anything green--to prevent your yard from being picked out from all the others via aerial photography. If you opt for the latter, Lawn World is the first place to stop: http://home.att.net/~dwis497002/home.htm
Take a look at the Lawn Care calendars, check out the close-up pictures of various garden pests, and learn stuff you probably never knew about phenomena like Fairy Ring and Slime Mould. This site is roughly 1000 times more bearable than one of those interminable "lawn talks" you've been having with the neighbors. Note: Be careful of some of the links--instead of taking you to another Web page, they immediately begin downloading PDF (Adobe Acrobat) documents instead.


Buying a new or used car? Before you visit a dealer, visit Kelley's Blue Book on the Web: http://www.kbb.com Here you can find out what a dealer will give you as a trade-in on a car, what the dealer will sell that car for, what a dealer pays for a new car, and what the dealer charges YOU. In other words, you'll learn enough not only to know whether you're being gouged, but also to do a little gouging yourself.
Some information on the site is incorrect--for example, a Volvo 850 is a front-wheel drive car but listed here as a rear-wheel--but this is nit-picking: A quick visit to this site can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars (or at least make a used car salesperson very uncomfortable for a few moments--and you can't put a price on that).

DIGITAL CHEF (home) http://www.digitalchef.com

Listen up, swingin' singles: If you find yourself eating out every night because, you claim, you don't know how to cook anything besides Cup-o-Noodles, that excuse no longer works. Poke around this recently redesigned culinary quick stop before you leave the office, hit the market on your way home, and cook away. Maintained by the Culinary Institute of America (St. Helena, California), the site's features include Everyday Kitchen, offering quick recipes; Chef's Galleries, featuring the favorite recipes of America's top chefs; and the Marketplace, selling gourmet foods and wines from Napa Valley's Dean & Deluca.


What's your ideal weight? If you don't know, don't worry--there are about 3000 places on the Web that will tell you. The people worried about your back at http://www.achingback.com/H_Lifestyle/IdealWeight.html offer a table; another place, called Health Answers, at http://www.healthanswers.com/database/ami/converted/001938.html has a way you can figure out not only what your weight should be (you have to be able to measure your wrist) but what percentage overweight you are. Too bad we didn't make the complete switch to metric years ago--there must be a thousand Java-based ideal weight calculators out there that require you to enter your weight in kilos and your height in centimeters (which, if nothing else, would make you feel taller and heavier).


Your gears are adjusted, your tires inflated, and you're ready to go biking--the only question is, where? Mountain Bike Trailsource wants to help: http://trailblazers.idsite.com/index.html
You won't find any information on the site per se--its purpose is to promote a book, by the same title, which documents more than 800 mountain biking trails all over the world. But the site is still worth visiting: It features excellent (and uncharacteristically un-annoying) Web special effects, pretty good music, and links to other trail books.
If you want faster access to trail information, try searching Yahoo, Excite, or some other search service for bike trail sites in your area.

MEAT.ORG http://www.meat.org/

Did somebody say McDonald's? Certainly not this Webmaster. Anyone who thinks vegetarians are a militant, in-your-face lot will certainly find grist for the mill here. Read the meaty—er—long essays against both the consumption and mass-production of meat; view clever manipulations of some popular fast-food logos; and find out if vegetarians make better lovers. Once done, you'll probably order up a salad at the next office lunch run. Be warned, however: Packed with AVI files, this site loads about as fast as grass grows.

GARBAGE http://www.learner.org/exhibits/garbage/

How's this for a sobering stat: "If your habits resemble those of average Americans, you contributed 1570 pounds of solid trash and 3613 pounds of sewage to the world's waste this past year." That tidbit is taken from the home page of this startling call-to-arms, part of the Annenberg/CPB Project (the company behind PBS's Save the Planet series). Read dire warnings and explore possible solutions (largely revolving around education and action, two alternatives the site presents well). And if you think there's a lot of garbage on the Web, you're right: The links section here is fuller than a McDonald's trash can after lunch hour.


About 70 years ago, Charles Atlas' "Hero of the Beach" cartoon first appeared, and since that time it has persuaded millions of males (and later, females) to order his Dynamic Tension workout program. Well, now "The World's Most Perfectly Developed Man" is on the Web: http://www.charlesatlas.com
If you're going here for a few quick tips, forget it: Mr. Atlas does offer free instructions for doing his own special between-chair push-ups, but everything else is withheld unless you purchase the course. Even if you're happy with your physique, you ought to visit the site for an object lesson in how advertising genius can overcome decades of non-innovation. While NordicTrack and others are spending millions in R&D every year, Atlas' company is selling what is essentially a book of 70-year-old exercise ideas for $45 a pop.


... this tip is NOT for you. But if you're an accomplished gardener looking to meet others of your ilk, head right over to The Garden Web, at http://www.gardenweb.com Here, you can read a newsletter on growing roses, look up botanical terms other highfalutin members of your garden club are tossing around, participate in forums (or should we call them "fora"--get it?) covering 60-plus categories of plants and shrubs. There's even a periodic "guess the mystery plant" quiz, with prizes for the winners. Aunt Bea would have loved this place.


Of course, we could only be talking about MARBLES--and the Web is full of them. You can view one collector's annotated collection, at http://www.ionet.net/~jlower/collection/marble.html or visit the virtual store of a husband and wife who sell them, at http://home.sprynet.com/sprynet/sheilam/marble.htm or see some Contemporary Art Glass Marbles, at http://marbles.utahusa.com
If you like foisting passe recreation on your kids, first buy them a sewer lid and then send them to this site for a list of books about how to play the game: http://www.gamekids.com/gkmarb.html

WILD FEED TV http://www.wildfeedtv.net

Before a TV broadcast goes on the air (especially if it's a live news show), the producers send a raw satellite transmission for a few minutes before the actual broadcast begins. Called a "wild feed," these missives are generally considered off-air by the industry. Suffice it to say that some of these moments—newsmen picking their teeth and unglamorously slamming competitors—are not the most flattering footage. But to 25-year-old New York artist Jed Rosenzweig, these feeds are a source of high art, forming the crux of his local access show, Wild Feed TV. Now you can view some QuickTime clips of his favorites online, though at about 2MB each they're not for casual viewing.

BEANIE BABY ADOPTION CENTER http://www.interlog.com/~poopsie

If you're one of the millions of people who have completely lost their minds over this Beanie Baby thing, we have some good news. Seems this Canadian couple is looking for adoptive homes for their stash. If you think you can give the little bags of beans—er—Beanie Babies a loving environment, fill out the simple order form and justify your need. One winning essay per month gets a Baby. While you're at it, soak up the latest visitor-contributed rumors, and exchange messages with other beanheads.

BLUES BROTHERS 2000 http://www.blues-brothers-2000.com

"Comin' to ya...On a dusty road..." It's hard to believe that 18 years have passed since Jake and Elwood first tore through the Illinois countryside on a Hell-bent mission from God, destroying nearly 100 automobiles along the way. But as the überbluesman Stevie Ray Vaughan once sang, "time keeps ticking away." Of course, Jake (John Belushi) has since joined Stevie in the great juke joint in the sky, but that hasn't kept Elwood (Dan Ackroyd) from cashing in on, er, keeping the spirit of the blues alive with his sequel. On this official site, fans can read the behind-the-scenes story of the film and its new stars, and learn a little blues history along the way.

NOVA ONLINE: SECRETS OF EASTER ISLAND (science) http://www.pbs.org/nova/easter/

How'd they do it? How did the inhabitants of Easter Island move and assemble the statues that adorn their coast, when some weigh as much as 80 tons and the terrain was rough at best? Archeologist Jo Anne Van Tilburg thinks she has the answer, and now you can track her team's progress through mid-May as they attempt to prove her theory by moving a replica across the island using only the tools available to the original inhabitants. Read her dispatches, send a suggestion to the team, or discover the history of this fascinating, enigmatic island through the site's lavish multimedia tour.


If you're a small business owner, you're probably tired of scrounging through established magazines for the few pearls they deign to toss to entrepreneurs. Perhaps sensing your frustration, Fortune created Your Company, the Site for Small Business Owners, at this quintessentially memorable URL: http://www.pathfinder.com/@@nyPXhAQA5g5DK6ui/money/yourco/
All kidding aside, this is an excellent resource. You'll find in-depth articles (one we read on choosing an HMO was both extremely thorough and easy to read, as was another on participating in online auctions), Site of the Week reviews (covering everything from sites posted by retirement fund companies to Intel's Small Business Networking sub-site), answers to reader's questions, and more. What if you work at a small business but are NOT the owner? Print out a few of these articles, circulate them around the office, and make yourself look good.


Biztravel, at http://www.biztravel.com is unique among business travel Web sites, or business travel publications in any medium; it not only admits that business travel is a necessary evil, but it delves deeply into the reasons why. For example, in a regular column entitled "The Brancatelli File," surly but seasoned traveler Joe Brancatelli thinks nothing of referring to airline personnel as "simpletons." Perhaps more preposterously, another columnist, airline safety expert Jerome Chandler, covers crashes and the like, complete with body counts. In other words, you wouldn't want to read Biztravel while sitting in a coach seat at 30,000 feet. On solid ground, however, you'll appreciate the site's honesty and advocacy--and its great features on planning trips that maximize your award miles, getting directions from your airport destination, and more. Don't leave your home office without visiting it.


Want to buy a business? Want to sell your business? Looks like Biz Buy Sell might be an excellent place to start either venture: http://www.bizbuysell.com
Our favorite is the "find a biz" search engine. It's easy to use, locates a surprising number of high-revenue businesses that--well, there's no other way to say it--seem legitimate. And if you don't find what you want, it lets you set up your own "Web-bot" that will repeat your search at specific intervals (every day, week, month, and so on), and then contact you when it finds a business that matches your search criteria. All this, and it looks good and runs fast too. Even if you don't plan to use it, you'd do well to emulate it.


Employers don't have much sympathy when it comes to your allergies. Not only do they expect you to report to work as usual, but they'd also rather you didn't arrive at meetings with a sleeveful of tissues. Here at Dummies Daily we say forewarned is forearmed: Defore you head out the door, visit Pfizer's Pollen Count Information page at http://www.uspto.gov
Here, you can click on a map to "drill down" the weekly pollen counts in major metropolitan and suburban areas of the United States. A chart depicts not only the pollen count for the week past but the count for the same week last year, which is apparently a pretty good predictor for the future. The site also includes general allergy information, a ShockWave-based "allergen matching game" (like "Concentration," with neat sounds, but utterly pointless), and, perhaps most importantly, the Pollen Information Hotline number at the National Allergy Bureau (800/9-POLLEN).


Good for you--you've got a Web site. So how do you plan to promote it? Which sites are the best advertising spots for your banners? How can you ensure that your ads--and the general atmosphere of your site--appeal not only to surfers in your country, but also to those in all the other countries that can connect to the Web? These are just some of the questions being explored at Who's Marketing Online http://www.wmo.com a still-evolving e-zine, published by ClickZ NET, that's focused entirely on doing business on the Web. ClickZ also offers ClickZToday at http://www.clickz.com which offers a new feature article on Web marketing every business day. The articles in both publications invite your feedback and provide continuity from day to day or week to week so that, rather than delivering the "final word" on any topic, they instead allow extended exploration of topics. It's probably not a bad place to start visiting regularly if you've suddenly found yourself in charge of your company's online business efforts.


So bustle thy browser to the Academy of American Poets home page, at http://www.poets.org/default.htm Read about the Favorite Poems project, where famous people like Laurie Anderson and Suzanne Vega read their favorites. Help out the Academy by bidding on rare books and other items. And best of all, jump to the Listening Room and hear poems being read by their authors--including some authors who have long since slipped from this mortal coil. It's one of those rare cases in which your soul will thank you for downloading RealAudio.


Ask your average pseudointellectual why the Internet evolved, and they will probably spout some pap about humanity's irrepressible need to communicate with fellow humans. When you get tired of hearing this nonsense, be sure to direct its purveyors to the Ken White Coin Flipping Page, at http://shazam.econ.ubc.ca/flip/ Here, thanks to the miracle of global connectivity, you and millions of other connected users can simulate the spine-tingling experience of FLIPPING A COIN. When the Pentagon spends hundreds of dollars on a hammer, that's wasteful. But marshal the power of the world's largest network to simulate a coin flip? That's technology at work. Perhaps it would help if more folks adopted Dummies Daily's First Rule of Web Page Content: If you think it's a mind-numbing, drool-maker of a bore in real life, just wait until you see it on the Web. In the meantime, keep an eye out for Mr. White's "Watch Paint Dry!" page.


If El Nino isn't blowing your house off its foundation, it's probably kicking your allergies into an earlier-than-usual high gear. Not to worry: The folks at Claritin are on the case with handy, free information. Visit the Control Your Allergies section of its Web site, at http://www.claritin.com/control/index.htm which features both a handy checklist for minimizing allergens in your home and, if you're building a new house, some guidelines for making it a more tolerable place to live. Sure, it may mean a future without deep pile carpets and cushy furniture--but we're betting you'll take clear sinuses over creature comforts any day.

KOSHER GROCER http://www.koshergrocer.com

Maintaining a strict kosher diet while traveling can be a nightmarish exercise. You'll be fine if your business takes you to Brooklyn, but hit Baton Rouge or Salt Lake City, and you'll have less luck finding a rabbi-blessed dish. But that's where the Internet can help, whether you know you'll soon be traveling to a nonkosher place, or you simply can't find your favorite knishes nearby. Choose from hundreds of items, all shipped FedEx with a $5 service charge and no state tax unless you live in (or are shipping to) NYC.

COMPUTER JOBS http://www.computerjobs.com

Who says you need to move to the San Francisco Bay Area to land a good job in the high-tech industry? Not the
people behind this new site. With thousands of jobs listed in the often-overlooked areas of Atlanta, Texas, the Carolinas, and Chicago, this hub that's updated hourly could help you land the gig you're after. Search by date listed, level of skill required, or computer language; or post your "Skills Resume" for potential employers to view.

PIE GATES http://www.hyperspective.com/piegates.html

Much of the digital world rejoiced (or at least snickered) when Bill Gates, the world's richest human, got pied in the face in Belgium. Naturally, that creamy dish became a catalyst for a frenzy of programming. Folks started digitizing and manipulating Bill's flustered image, and other propeller heads put together Shockwave games such as this. You control the noggin as it works its way through a PacMan-like maze, dodging menacing meringues and collecting bags of loot along the way. This programmer obviously has a chocolate chip on his shoulder, as it's nearly impossible to escape the pies.

ANOTHER UNIVERSE.COM http://anotheruniverse.com

Comic book fans move in an exclusive world, whose habitués typically include pre-teen sci-fi enthusiasts, post-teen programmers, and some role-playing grrls. But somewhere in that demographic must certainly exist the comic book fan who wants to diversify. If that diversification includes L.A. gliterati, Another Universe may be the answer. AU definitely focuses on comic book paraphernalia, sci-fi memorabilia, and the like, but it also includes Hollywood gossip and interviews with B-level celebs. Maybe it's step 1 in a 12-step comic book weaning program.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: INTERNET EDITION http://chicago.tribune.com

When does a relaunch qualify as a "new" site? In the Chicago Tribune's case, it's when you swap a neat, frame-based, newspaper-like interface for a fancy new Java implementation that closely resembles a TV screen. The central console displays headlines and pictures, letting you click on stories that interest you. A side menu lets you choose among news, sports, business, leisure, communities (coverage of the 'burbs), marketplaces (online classifieds), and "Interact" (message boards, staff e-mail). While Chicagoans are the obvious target, out-of-towners may want to check out the paper's heartland take on national and international events, not to mention its slavish coverage of Michael Jordan's every move on and off the court.

INVESTOR WORDS (finance) http://www.investorwords.com

Don't you hate it when mechanics or doctors flaunt their knowledge (or your ignorance) by using words that only someone with years of training would understand? Brokers and accountants are no different, but now you have a new deciphering weapon at your disposal. This extensive glossary defines thousands of investor-related terms, from "abatement" to "zero-sum game," and weaves extensive hyperlinked cross-referencing into most definitions. An excellent bookmark for the online investor.

THE DOG HAUSE (living) http://www.doghause.com

Did you know that if your cat nudges your feet in the morning, it wants to stay inside, and if it nudges your face, it wants to go out? Those and dozens more pearls of folk wisdom can be found on this new site dedicated to pets and pet lovers. But this isn't a one-trick pony. You'll also find jokes, idioms, and superstitions, plus free clip art and fonts, sound files, an oversized kennel of links, and much more. DH's marriage of solid design and sophisticated technology--an honor to Bauhaus design philosophy if ever we've seen one--makes any visit a pleasurable romp.

BACAN LATINO (services) http://www.latino.bacan.com

Not another misspelled six-degrees-of-Kevin-Bacon game, but a Latino-specific search engine servicing the U.S. Bacan means "cool" in Spanish, and this site is definitely cool in that it helps foster community among the Web's Latin users. Search within English-language topics such as Arts and Humanities, Computers, and Travel, and the service returns Spanish- or English-language sites that have a Latin bent. Though the current database is nowhere near as big as Yahoo's behemoth, we hope the bulk will increase exponentially in the next few Web years.

BEYOND INTERFACE (art) http://www.archimuse.com/mw98/beyondinterface/

Anyone who thinks that "Web art" is an oxymoron is in for one hell of a surprise when they visit this gorgeous front door of site. Created by Steve Dietz, director of new media initiatives for the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Beyond Interface's "online catalog" features 24 works selected by a jury for their artistic merit. Each launches in a separate browser window, and no two are alike. From Simon Biggs' frightening "Great Wall of China" to the cacophony of Jodi.org, the sites presented here are not to be missed. As you browse, be sure to read BI's intriguing commentaries on the state of Web-based art.


By now you've probably heard of the sensationally titled Web Pages That Suck--the book that says you can "learn good design by looking at bad design." Well, its authors have set up a Web site at http://www.webpagesthatsuck.com/home.html that illustrates some of the concepts in the book. Their online tour of bad sites does indeed demonstrate many annoying and avoidable elements of bad design--but we couldn't help but notice that the tour itself was delivered in an annoying, odd-size frame layout. The suggestions for what makes a good Web page are fewer but well taken; the authors are big promoters of compelling content, of which the Web could use quite a bit more.
For more advice in a much easier-to-digest (but occasionally cryptic) format, see "Top 10 Ways to Tell If You Have a Sucky Home Page" (there's that word again) at http://www.glover.com/sucky.html


A new insult with every page refresh! We could only be talking about the Abuse-A-Tron, at http://www.xe.com/htbin/nph-abuse
It is THE place to find the right insult for any friendly gathering, neighborhood argument, or divorce court session. On the downside, every insult follows a strict formula--namely, "You (do something stupid), you (bad adjective), (noun-verbing), (noun-verbing), (bad adjective) (noun) of a (bad adjective) (horrible thing to be)." On the plus side, if you click your refresh button enough, you may get a gem like "You chase cats, you abysmal, bug gargling, harp seal-sucking, Epicurean scion of a flatulent Human Resources Professional." (Okay, maybe it's not a gem, but it's not bad for a randomly generated put-down.)
Interestingly, when we visited this site, its graphics didn't display--making it, in our mind, a "dysfunctional, yawn-inducing, Sominex-replacing, misbegotten mutant spawn of a sub-AOL Web server." Don't dish it out if you can't take it.


Okay, folks, it's time for a dose of reality: The Web is filled with stories of people who get things stuck in, er, the outgoing end of their alimentary canals. But (no pun intended) while many sites handle this phenomenon in the expected sophomoric fashion, one site, Rectal Foreign Bodies, at http://www.well.com/user/cynsa/newbutt.html takes a refreshing (okay, maybe not refreshing, but certainly more respectable) approach. Here you'll find reports of implausibly lodged items--all filed by the medical and emergency personnel forced to remove them. Truly, perspective is everything. And as we learned from the famous "Fusilli Jerry" Seinfeld episode, despite the "victims'" initial claims, very few of these incidents are accidental. Obviously, this site is not for your kids; regrettably, it even includes X-rays.


Is the O.J. Simpson trial still sticking in your craw? Or has it stopped sticking in your craw, and you want to get the old feeling back? Either way, we recommend Simpson Trial Poetry at http://www.cris.com/~outlawyr/ojpoetry.htm where you can read excerpts of actual statements of the attorneys involved, arranged in different lines so as to resemble free verse. The Webmaster was struck by the strong resemblance these ramblings bear to poetry, and for the most part, we agree. Our favorite was "Tuffed Up," by Marcia Clark. If nothing else, her inadvertent ode will convince you that while felons in Los Angeles may have many things to fear, a jury conviction is not one of them. For the laughs that you'll need after reading this page, try the Webmaster's other parodies and electronic Mad Lib games at http://www.cris.com/~outlawyr/mark.shtml


Do you sit around all day, trying to imagine the perfect person you could assemble from the attributes of various "beautiful" people? You know: What if you could combine Brad Pitt's eyes with Keanu Reeves' dimples? If you don't, good for you--your future is bright. If you do--and do so without mourning the time you've lost and will never get back--then hustle your transplant-team butt over to Faces, at http://www.corynet.com/faces/faces.html
Here you can live out your eugenic fantasies in either of two ways: Just for fun, you can assemble faces from the eyes, noses, and mouths of the stars, just to see what happens; or you can create formulas from other people's parts that add up to a completely different celebrity--as in Arnold Schwarzenegger's eyes + Keanu Reeves' nose + Antonio Banderas's mouth = Richard Gere! (our favorite). If there's more "fun with vivisection" to be had on the Web, we have yet to find it.

EXPLORE http://www.exploremag.com

Look out your window. No, not at your window.cam Web site, but at the world that exists right outside that glass window pane. It's pretty big, huh? Some folks like to explore just how big the world is by tackling some of its rugged locales for sport. They're called extreme sport enthusiasts, and this new Web site wants to be their voice. Explore presents a handful of interviews, travel guides, and lifestyle articles on several aspects of extreme sports. Well-written and with a hip design, the site also offers gear classifieds, a travel service, and weather forecasts.


When you were a kid, did you delight in jumping from trees and sledding down cliffs? You might want to consider making a living from those childhood penchants. The SAMP is a group of bravehearted men and women who literally take the fall for Hollywood's hottest stars. Read the history of the health-insurance industry's most hated organization, find out about upcoming events (in Southern California), or follow handpicked links to like-minded sites. We'd wager one of the site's most visited sections is the online store; after all, if you're too chicken to jump out of buildings for a living, at least you can wear a hat that says you do.

VIDNET http://www.vidnetusa.com

With both MTV and VH1 devoting smaller and smaller segments of time to showing music videos, it's fair to say that if you miss your favorite band's clip you may have to wait a while before it reappears. But now, with the advent of video-on-demand sites such as the newly launched Vidnet, you can see that video as often as you want. Download the VivoActive streaming video plug-in, twist your monitor to face the couch, and you're ready to sit back and watch hundreds of videos, organized by genre. To the site's credit, Vidnet has remained bleeding edge; it even has the uncut version of the latest controversial (and banned) Prodigy video. Not that we watched it, of course.

RE: TOKYO http://retokyo.com

London, Paris, New York, Tokyo. One of the world's most crowded places, Tokyo operates 24 hours a day as a global hub for all manner of finance, art, and entertainment. It's appropriate, then, that this new destination, offering "The pulse of Tokyo from street level," keeps its finger on a hodgepodge of ideas, images, and tales. Re: Tokyo offers game reviews and information, updates on anime cartoons, and shots of the hottest bands in the area. A cool spot for anyone considering traveling to Japan, or for those looking to expand their cultural horizons.

GREASE! http://www.grease-tour.com

"Grease is the word that you heard, it's got groove, it's got feeling and motion." And now it's got a nationally touring cast to add to that list. That's right, the Greasers and the Pink Ladies are back, bringing their high-octane, fifties-inspired musical on the road. This official site tells the tale of the crew from Rydell High (just in case you weren't familiar with the story already), offers a few downloadable songs from the score, and lays out a historical remembrance of the decade where everything was just peachy. So break out those saddle shoes and find out if you'll be singing "Beauty School Dropout" again soon.

UNION OF CONCERNED SCIENTISTS (science) http://www.ucsusa.org

Scientists have gotten some bad press recently with the cloning controversy, but one organization serves as a bellwether on our planet's health and the dangers it faces. Currently 70,000 strong, the Union of Concerned Scientists seeks a healthy environment and a safe world--lofty goals it hopes to accomplish through research, education, and legislative advocacy. The UCS divides its efforts into six categories, ranging from agriculture to global warming to transportation, all of which are examined on this official site. Find out more about the organization's work and how you can join.

MONEYMINDED (money) http://moneyminded.com

Even though women comprise 46 percent of the workforce, they're much less likely to invest their money and plan for retirement than men. That trend may change if emerging sites such as this have a say. Sponsored by Hearst New Media, this woman-centric money site takes the stodginess out of finance and planning and actually makes it fun. Though we found the articles a bit thin, MM's advice on mortgages, worklife, investing, credit and debt, and retirement planning effectively point visitors in the right direction. Keep abreast of stock quotes, participate in forums, calculate a number of financial futures, and discover innovative ways to pinch a few pennies.

JOHN GLENN: THREE ORBITS TO HISTORY (science) http://www.capstonestudio.com/mercury/

In October 1998 John Glenn will make aerospace history: 36 years after his initial space flight, the NASA astronaut will return once again to the cosmos to study the effects of space travel on aging. Talk about a life less ordinary. If you're curious about Glenn or the history of the space program in general, this fantastic new site (designed by Capstone Studios) will enthrall, educate, and astound you. Read about the origins of the space race, meet the Mercury 7 astronauts, listen to the actual tracking signal from the original Sputnik, and discover a universe of other space curios.


Spend lots of time sending messages to people on ships 500 feet away? Ever wish that you, too, could spell out your initials on the side of your car in little flag decals? Ever wanted to know how semaphore code works? If, like most people, your answers to these questions are "Of course not," "Of course not," and "Well, maybe," then you may want to try the Text to Semaphore Converter, at http://es-parto.lancs.ac.uk/~esarie/tarboard/practice.htm
Type in a phrase of 60 or fewer characters (such as "Captain Steubing, Julie's into the schnapps again!"), and this Web-based wonder translates it into stick people waving flags or more clearly defined people waving flags or semaphore flags themselves. If you have enough time, you could even translate your next status report into semaphore code and then deliver it, using flags of your own, at your next staff meeting. That should land you that severance package you've been shooting for.


Cool Site of the Day, at http://cool.infi.net/ is exactly what it says it is: a place with a link to a different cool Web site each day. From what we can see, the featured sites are very well designed; they're also varied--seems these folks will even feature a person's small business or personal Web page if they think it's cool. Plus, the site has other great areas--like our favorite, "Bad, Bad Webmaster, Bad!!!" which documents the various complaints the site's Webmasters have received for different f eatures they've run. Unfortunately, the Cool Site itself is very slow. You're way better off reading the help text beneath the graphic links than waiting for the graphics to display. And for the love of Mike, don't even attempt a site search unless you've already banked your first million.


"If you are like most Americans, you believe that a conspiracy killed Kennedy. And if you are like most Americans, you have mostly heard one side of the story. This Web site is dedicated to telling the other side of the story--to presenting evidence that Oswald acted alone. You may not want to hear that side of the story. It's really a lot of fun to believe that there was a conspiracy. But if you're interested in hearing the 'other side' of the story, then this is the place to be."
We couldn't have put it any better ourselves. For more, including, surprisingly enough, links to "conspiracy sites," visit John McAdams' Kennedy Assassination Home Page at http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/home.htm


What does the world look like seen through a camera strapped to a parasitic fish? This is just one of the questions answered at the National Geographic-sponsored CritterCam Chronicals, at http://www.nationalgeographic.com/features/98/crittercam/index.html Finding the films isn't easy: First, you have to click the quotes in the text of the presentation; then click the links in the windows that pop up. For all this, you're rewarded with streaming CritterCam action--slow, jerky, and in low resolution, just like all the other Web video in the world. Our advice: Read the text and skip the films; you'll probably learn more.


For the past decade, millions of artists have embraced the computer as a more flexible--and more forgiving--alternative to pencil and paint. However, Joan Stark, who exhibits her work at Joan Stark's Gallery of Original ASCII Art at http://www.geocities.com/SoHo/7373/ has missed the point--albeit with truly incredible results. Yes, Joan has rendered scores of cartoon characters, regular people, human body parts, and more using only her space bar, hard return, and the characters she can generate from her keyboard. While you wouldn't want to use any of these images to illustrate your next annual report, they are still the ONLY pictures you can insert into your e-mail messages and expect to appear exactly as they were intended to appear on the receiving end. As testimony to her obsession, Joan has even created several ASCII animations; regrettably, only one or two of them worked on our browser.

M&M'S CYBERCENTER FOR MILLENNIUM HYPE http://www.m-ms.com/millennium

On the face of it, M&M Candies' new Web site that calls attention to the hype that the candies have created in dubbing themselves "The Official Candy of the New Millennium" (MM is the Roman numeral representation of 2000, get it?) seems like yet another corporate PR site. But upon deeper examination, the Mars spin doctors are making fun of—and in a tongue-in-cheek manner trying to stop—the hype they've created. This presents a new paradigm for advertising: Creating hype, then creating hype by making fun of the fact that you're creating hype. Call it shameless or call it brilliant. Oh yeah, you can also enter a contest to get one of your prize possessions dubbed as the "official" (blank) of the millennium.

VIBRATION NATION http://www.vibrationnation.com

Looking for a name to drop to your too-hip friends that will send them scrambling for their music databases? Hang for a spell in the redesigned Vibration Nation, and you'll soon have plenty. Showcasing the talent of more than a hundred mostly unsigned bands, VN allows visitors to listen to the sounds, and if they're so inclined, purchase the discs directly from the site. A plug-in must be downloaded to hear the music, but you won't waste time searching for the style you like; the tunes are neatly organized by genre.

THE NATIONAL THEATRE http://www.nt-online.org

Whether you're planning a trip to London or simply are a theater enthusiast, the new National Theatre's online arena will hold you enraptured for hours; even as your loved one pleads for an intermission. Read the fascinating history of the house, peruse the list of plays performed there, discover what's coming up on the bill, and much more. If you want to order tickets, you won't be able to do so online, but you can find out how to land a ducat to this theatre on the Thames.

BEAULIEU VINEYARDS http://www.bv-wine.com

Deep in California's Napa Valley lies Beaulieu Vineyards, one of the area's top vintners. BV's gorgeous new official site offers detailed information on its choice varietals, from cabs to pinots to syrahs. Snap up some "objets de Beaulieu" (hats, shirts, and so on), pose your private wonderings to the Wine Oracle, and hobnob with the "right" people on BV's bulletin boards. No bottles are available for online purchase, but perhaps that's because the Beaulieu staff wants to entice you to visit for yourself. In that case, we're sold.

INTERNET TRAFFIC REPORT http://www.internettrafficreport.com

Contemplating downloading the latest version of Netscape Communicator? Before you attempt to tow that 18-ton semi down the information superhighway, you'd better check the traffic. The Internet Traffic Report is a helpful tool for gauging how quickly data traffic is moving on the Internet in general, or in your area in particular. The graphically represented, easy-to-understand results can let you know if the file from San Jose will speed along the wires at a reasonable speed, or if thousands of folks are currently online downloading that silly Ally McBeal dancing baby.

THE DIGITAL FREEDOM NETWORK (politics) http://www.dfn.org

While nations such as China struggle for control over the anarchic Internet, a group of concerned activists has launched this new site dedicated to voicing suppressed dissidents' opinions. What's more, the Digital Freedom Network publishes the banned political cartoons, editorials that got the organization into trouble in the first place. Its sparsely designed showcase launches with s lecture from Chinese democracy movement leader Wei Jingsheng and selections from the writings of Havana journalist Raul Rivero. Find out where the latest hot spots for censorship are and what you can do to combat suppression of speech.

INVISIBLE HAND ELECTRONIC MARKET (weird) http://www.myhand.com

To make serious bucks on the Dow, you've got to do some serious research. But who really wants to read through analysts' reports on a Saturday night? Enter Invisible Hand, a faux market that claims it trades on issues more relevant to the rest of us. Register with the site, get $10,000 in fake e-cash, and you're off and wagering on such propositions as "Will the Chicago Bulls win the championship?" or "Will Madonna's latest album remain on the Top 40 for less than 25 weeks?" If this seems like a mindless waste of time, well, it is, but top traders are awarded valuable real prizes like a $500 gift certificate to CD Now. Just think, religiously reading Entertainment Weekly might actually pay off!


Every so often a Web site comes along that has the potential to offend virtually anyone who might visit it (actually, this happens a lot more often than you might expect). In our opinion, The Official Cow-Tipping Web Site, at http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Vault/6963 is to date the archetype of the genre. Do you hate cruelty to animals? This site lets you tip cows repeatedly while they moo in protest (and, we hasten to add, while you keep your shoes clean). Are you against cruelty to people? Join the 900 or so folks who have slapped the Webmaster for even conceiving this abomination. Hate sites that substitute screen refreshes for real animation? This site will incense you. Hate disco? "Burn, Baby, Burn," thoughtfully revived by the torture-masters at Intel, plays incessantly and tinnily in the background. All in all, the site designer should be congratulated: This could be the most subtly and brilliantly annoying computing experience since, well, WordPerfect 1.0 for Windows.


The 100 Most Wired Colleges, at http://www.wiredcolleges.com is designed to tell you which colleges are using the Internet to the greatest academic benefit. It's not necessarily a criterion for selecting a school, but it's definitely a way to know what you're in for and maybe what to lobby for when you get to your chosen school. We liked the information, and know of no other place to get it; some of the articles bothered us (one describes cowardly Amherst men scoping out--and even breaking up with--Smith and Mount Holyoke women over the Web); and we were entirely put off when the site host tried to collect demographic data from us before we left.

STRESS INC. (living) http://stress.jrn.columbia.edu/

"We're mad as hell, and we're not going to take it anymore!" Chances are, if the Network characters who screamed that phrase had visited this site, they might have been a little more chill throughout the film. Sponsored by some enterprising students at the Columbia School of Journalism, Stress Inc. takes a look at the tall tales and buckets of money that the commercialization of stress has created. Read well-written essays discussing stress as it has been portrayed in the worlds of advertising, publishing, pharmaceuticals, fitness, and more. Getting stressed just reading about it? Thankfully, the site offers distracting games and quizzes. But ... what if you don't get a high score?


This is the question you'll be asking after trying just one of the online magic tricks at Trendy Magic, Interactive Style at http://pw2.netcom.com/~sleight/interactivemagic.html Start with the Mysterious Rabbit card tricks, in which the site somehow seems to know which card you picked: it's absolutely disconcerting and did not fail in the HUNDREDS of tests we put it through. (The Psycho Test is easier to stump.) If you can tear yourself away from the card trick and the other tricks on the site, you'll find up-to-date listings of magic shows on television, biographies of magicians from around the world, and more information on prestidigitation.


If you had to choose an Official Food of Cyberspace, it would just have to be SPAM (and don't think the makers of Tang aren't kicking themselves over this). So what better way to surf than while wearing a SPAM T-shirt and pinstriped SPAM cap, rolling your mouse on a SPAM mouse pad, your SPAM-can earrings dangling from your lobes? These are just a few of the goodies you can order at the SPAM gift catalog, at http://coyote.co.net/spamgift You'll also find SPAM ties, SPAM bowling shirts, and SPAM stadium seat pads. There's even a SPAM street sign (which, by the look of things, would be an appropriate name for every road in America). Mercifully, the only thing you CAN'T buy here is a gift tin of SPAM. While the human race has developed an ability to survive all manner of horrors and indignities, a can of gel-encased meat nested in a box of Excelsior is still too much for most people to take.


Such is the epiphany that the creators of The Comic Book Periodic Table at http://www.uky.edu/~holler/periodic/periodic.html hope they can induce in children all over America. Written by two University of Kentucky professors who have actually lectured on the influence of chemistry on comic book heroes, this site lets users click on almost any square of the periodic table and display actual comic book pages that include references to that element! (We say "almost" because this apparently enlightened medium hasn't yet delved into the dramatic implications of potassium or boron.) Yes, we suppose this is one way to teach the subject, but we can't help wondering what's more pathetic: students who do math on their fingers or students who make a lasting mental connection between Skeletor and mendelevium?


If you think that understanding breeds tolerance, Bad Fads, at http://www.adscape.com/badfads/ may make you reconsider. This site provides the stories and facts behind "the fads you wished would stay forever (or never come back)." The understanding you can accumulate here is considerable. We learned, among other things, the name of the barber who invented the DA, the reason that Zoot Suits didn't last, and when Ouija boards outsold Monopoly games. But knowing the origins of the leisure suit doesn't make you want to wear one so much as it makes you want to seek out and destroy the perpetrator.

ORVIS FLY FISHING OUTFITTERS hp://www.shop.orvis.com

Die-hard fly fishers of the world must have been pretty surprised when A River Runs Through It came out and suddenly their Saturday afternoon pastime became hot. Well, it did, and the pockets of companies such as Orvis are now lined with gold-plated fishing line. If you're considering fishing on the fly, you'll need to buy some waders and other accessories, and this site's got oceans of them. From rods and reels to waders and something called a "tippet," you'll find it here.


Are you concerned, like many of us here at Dummies Daily, that the only thing you can learn from the news is what the president thinks "counts" as sex? Well, Spizzerinctum, at http://www.mcs.net/~kvj/spizz.html has come to our rescue. The master of this Web site teaches you a new and obscure word every day by weaving it into a current news story and then letting you guess the word's meaning from context, then select from a list of three possible definitions. All this, plus WAV files of each word's correct pronunciation--the better to impress your cohorts with. And if you read carefully, you'll often find some good jokes among the incorrect definition choices.


Are you miserable? One place to find company is Life Sucks Because I'm a Loser, at http://www.geocities.com/CollegePark/Quad/4365/index.html This site starts off on a light note with a quick and funny top ten list signs that the site's creator is a loser (number four reads, "I can count all my 'friends' on the fingers of my left hand," and number three reads, "I have to write 'friends' with quotation marks."). But as you dig deeper, things get a tad more depressing: You'd be surprised at how many people consider themselves losers: Over 220 folks have already joined the site creator's loser club. On the other hand, if you can't get enough of "loser gestalt," follow the Loser Site Web Ring links at the bottom of the page, where you can find as many of these sites as you can handle.


It's hard to compete with Digital Blasphemy's awesome backgrounds, screen savers, and movies, but Watchful Eye might just give it a run for its money.
If you've ever used Bryce software, you know how easy it is to create a fairly cool background or picture. But you also know that the powerful and complex software is capable of far greater artistic feats than most of us are. That's why you'll really appreciate what Watchful Eye offers.
This Web site is quite spectacular. Be sure to click on some of its Bryce Galleries and take a look at what Bryce and a little talent in the digital imaging field can render! You can also submit your own Bryce works to the Galleries, or just browse around and pick out a cool desktop for yourself. The choice is yours, and isn't that what healthy competition is all about? http://www.bmacleod.com/ GET YOUR MP3s HERE Oth.net is a leech site. Don't be afraid--this just means that it's a place where you can share your MP3s with others. In fact, some of the songs available at this site are obtainable only if you submit an MP3 in exchange. The home page of this Web site doesn't appear to be much. There's nothing fancy--just a very good, powerful search prompt that's better by far than most MP3 searches on the Internet. At Oth.net, you can search for any song you wish, and chances are good you'll be able to download the MP3 file you're looking for without having to upload one of yours. http://www.oth.net/ GRAB THE POPCORN! You like to go to the movies, right? Sure you do. How many times have you wanted to see a flick but forgot to buy the newspaper, so you found yourself sitting through the interminable prerecorded telephone message just to find out when to show up? We know, you don't have that many fingers and toes. Well, there's a better way. Simply go to Cinemark.com and find your local Cinemark movie theater. Click Tickets & Showtimes, select your state or zip code, and choose the theater nearest you. It's that simple. Cinemark.com will then display the showtimes, ratings, and ticket prices of that facility's available movies. http://www.cinemark.com/ IT'S TIME FOR A VIRTUAL VACATION Don't worry if you don't have any vacation time saved up. You can visit hundreds of museums, exhibits, cities, and buildings by simply visiting Virtual Tours. Just think, you can tour the White House or the Smithsonian without being hassled by any secret service agents or security guards. It's about time you took a break from all that hard work. You deserve to see what the well-known tourist sites are all about. To spark your interest, here are a few of the offerings at Virtual Tours: The Acropolis, an ancient Roman villa, Carnegie Mellon University, or the Computer History Museum (scary, isn't it?). The only annoying downfall of this site is its advertisements. You have to continually click the "click here to continue" button to see what you're after in Virtual Tours, because the display window is automatically overtaken by an ad. http://www.dreamscape.com/frankvad/tours.html LAUGH IT UP Let's face it--even if you work in the best office in the world, you can always use a little humor to lighten up your day. Welcome to the Office Humor Joke Book. If you think the stupid stuff that goes on in your office is funny, check out some of the stories here. They'll make you want to commend all the people you work with for their intelligence. This site has whatever it is that makes you laugh--jokes, stories, cartoons, badly written memos. Just don't spend too much time here, or your boss may not find it funny. http://www.tech-sol.net/humor/ LIVE CAMS! At Discovery.com, you'll find the best of the cable channel and the Web right at your fingertips. But there's more to this site than checking out the TV schedule. Besides the typical feature stories, news, and forums, you can also visit other Discovery sites, such as The Learning Channel and Animal Planet, with the click of your mouse. Of particular interest is the Live Cams section, where you can spy on all sorts of things, from a Las Vegas wedding to the restoration of the Washington Monument. Have you ever wondered what's going on in the center of our solar system? Check out the live sun cam. Want to see a cute baby gorilla during playtime? If so, don't pass up the baby gorilla cam. (The twins are getting bigger every week!) But first, a word to the wise: Remember that these are live cams, so don't expect excitement every time you click. The Discovery channel has always been a place to go for science and learning when there's nothing better to watch on TV. But, why not get some fun out of learning and take an active part in watching things live in action? http://www.discovery.com/ LOOK WHAT iWON! Unlike most Web sites you've seen before, iWon offers you something truly unique. This site has sports scores, horoscopes, stock quotes, business news, entertainment bulletins, and many other tidbits of information. You'll find a Search feature and a free e-mail account. But you've seen all this before, right? So what's so spectacular about iWon.com? We'll tell you. How would you like to win a million dollars? Sure, it's something you can only dream about, or is it? At iWon.com, you actually have the chance to win (hence, the name, iWon--keep up here). Until March 31, iWon's giving away a $10,000 daily prize; there's also $1 million monthly prizes and a $10 million annual prize up for grabs. So how do you enter to win? First, register (it's free), then surf the Web and get some points. Earning points is easy--make sure that your computer accepts cookies and the process is automatic. Go to the site and read the directions for more info, then surf the Internet and say "iWon!" http://www.iwon.com/ LOOKING FOR WINDOWS UTILITIES? WinSite.com offers many of those nifty little Windows utilities that let you do all sorts of interesting things. Check out these utilities: * Go!Zilla--Helps you resume failed downloads and recover from other download errors. * SSSiter--A free personal search engine. * SS Spider--Submits search criteria to eight search engines simultaneously. * PKZip/PKUnzip--Freeware zip utility for Windows by PKWare. * WebCam Monitor--Find, play, and record live WebCams. WinSite.com also offers other free programs, tools, drivers, and much more. It's the place to turn to for that next big project, such as turning your CD collection into an MP3 gallery. Go to WinSite.com. You'll find what you're looking for. http://www.winsite.com/ ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, OVERCLOCK! You've undoubtedly heard some of those great overclocking stories. Some guy at work gets a wild hair one day and decides to put his motherboard in a freezer so he can overclock his system. If you think that's amusing, then visit Overclockers.com. You'll be amazed at what some serious computerphiles can do with a little time and a lot of ingenuity. Have you ever wanted to embark on an overclocking odyssey of your own? If so, Overclockers.com is the perfect place to start. Here you can get all sorts of essential information, ranging from how to keep your processor from igniting to what kind of case you'll need for that box you're building (be it a refrigerator or something a bit smaller). http://www.overclockers.com/ OURHOUSE IS A VERY, VERY, VERY FINE HOUSE OurHouse.com is not your typical Internet shopping site. You won't find any toys or books there. What you will find is an online hardware store. In fact, OurHouse is partnered with Ace Hardware, so you'll find nearly everything you need to complete those projects you resolved to get around to a couple of months ago. Of course, you could spend all day Saturday running errands to get what you need for your weekend project, but that doesn't leave you much time to do the work, does it? Hit OurHouse.com during the week, have your materials delivered, and spend your valuable weekend time getting that bathroom painted or ceiling fan installed. Save gas and time and go to OurHouse.com for all your household maintenance needs. You'll be glad you did. http://www.ourhouse.com/ PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM At Scour, you'll find all your favorite tunes in a variety of formats. Wouldn't you love to have a recognizable tune playing in the background when someone loads your Web page? Scour has what you need to get the job done. This site offers MP3 files, .wav files, and even those MIDI files that you can't seem to find anywhere else. In order to download most of the files, movies, and other goodies that Scour offers, you'll first need to download the Scour Media Agent. This nifty little program allows you to optimize bandwidth and speed up downloads, among other things. And don't fret about the cost; the Scour Media Agent is free to all Scour members. Oh yeah, Scour membership is free as well! http://www.scour.net/ TEST YOUR IQ This one's for all you brainiacs out there. Remember in school when they gave you an IQ test, but they didn't tell you your score for fear it would go to your head? Well, now you can finally find out just how smart you really are. We know you IT pros love to quantify things, so head on over to IQTest.com and assess your own capacity for a change. The test is free and so are the results, so you really have nothing to lose (except about 20 minutes of your time and perhaps a bit of your humility). http://www.iqtest.com/ WATCH YOUR STEP! AfterStep is a window manager for Linux and UNIX X Window Systems. AfterStep.com offers some pretty interesting features, one of which is the pager. If you've ever used a pager, you know just how handy one can be. This device lets you have four different desktops going at the same time, allowing you to flip from one to the other. It's an amazing screen space saver. Another of AfterStep's greatest features is its stability. Check out the Web site for the long list of facts that show why AfterStep is one of the most stable window manager programs available. You'll also find many interesting tidbits (like the fact that this product has been Y2K compliant since 1970!). AfterStep is Gnome and KDE compliant as well, so there's really no excuse not to check this site out! http://www.afterstep.org/ WHAT DO YOU NEED? There's a scene in Disney's Aladdin in which a genie, just released from his bottle, continues to say, "What do you need, what do you need, what do you need?" That's the kind of the feeling you get when you visit SourceForge.net, one of the Web's most accommodating download centers. Whether you need business applications, text editors, file utilities, or games, SourceForge is the place to go. Applications you can retrieve from this site support a variety of operating systems: Windows, UNIX, Linux, MacOS, even PalmOS, and BeOS. The next time you find yourself wishing for a computer genie to solve your problems, check out this site. You'll probably walk away with your answer. http://sourceforge.net/softwaremap/ CHECKMATE! Do you know how to play chess? Are you good at it? Is it hard to find worthy opponents? If so, you need to check out chess.net. Much like some of the well-known game sites that exist, this site allows you to play chess with other people over your Internet connection. It's free, and if you have a passion for the game, you can't pass this one up. Have you ever played against a Grand Master? Not many people have, but you can try your luck at it on this Web site. All you have to do is log on to the site, which will dump you into a chat room of sorts where you can choose an opponent to challenge for a battle of the minds. There are four ways to play people via chess.net. You can download one of two pieces of software, use a Java applet, or use telnet (only recommended for advanced users). You can also shop for cool chess videos and software at the Chess Shop, and you read up on the latest chess news or find some helpful tips from the weekly advice column. http://www.chess.net/ 1) http://www.theromantic.com - inspires men and women to continually enrich their relationships with each other. 2) http://www.men.crosswalk.com - source for meaningful, lively dialogue and practical resources for daily living. 3) http://www.newmanmag.com - official website of 'New Man' magazine. 4) http://www.edcole.org - official website for the Christian Men's Network. 5) http://www.fathers.com - Inspires and equips men to be better fathers. 6) http://www.marriagebuilders.com - some of the best ways to overcome marital conflicts and some of the quickest ways to restore love. 7) http://www.smallgroups.com - resources to help sharpen your focus, intensify your leadership skills, and prepare small groups to be purpose driven. 8) http://www.militaryministry.com - civilian run military ministry to empower your life with the Holy Spirit. 9) http://www.newlifeministry.org - online sex addiction support group. 10) http://www.greatdads.org - seminars to motivate and train fathers to be great dads. Once upon a time, there was an island where all the feelings lived: Happiness, Sadness, Knowledge, and all of the others including Love. One day it was announced to the feelings that the island would sink, so all repaired their boats and left. Love was the only one who stayed. Love wanted to persevere until the last possible moment. When the island was almost sinking...Love decided to ask for help. Richness was passing by Love in a grand boat. Love said, 'Richness, can you take me with you?' Richness answered, 'No, I can't...there is a lot of gold and silver in my boat. There is no place here for you.' Love decided to ask Vanity who was also passing by in a beautiful vessel, 'Vanity, please help me!' 'I can't help you Love...you are all wet and might damage my boat,' Vanity answered. Sadness was close by so Love asked for help, 'Sadness, let me go with you.' 'Oh...Love...I am so sad that I need to be by myself!' Happiness passed by Love too, but she was so happy that she did not even hear when Love called her! Suddenly, there was a voice, 'Come Love, I will take you.' It was an elder. Love felt so blessed and overjoyed that he even forgot to ask the elder her name. When they arrived at dry land, the elder went her own way. Love realizing how much he owed the elder asked Knowledge, another elder, 'Who helped me?' 'It was Time,' Knowledge answered. 'Time?' asked Love. 'But why did Time help me?' Knowledge smiled with deep wisdom and answered, 'Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Love is.' Have a special day and live in the present moment. Once upon a time, there was an island where all the feelings lived: Happiness, Sadness, Knowledge, and all of the others including Love. One day it was announced to the feelings that the island would sink, so all repaired their boats and left. Love was the only one who stayed. Love wanted to persevere until the last possible moment. When the island was almost sinking...Love decided to ask for help. Richness was passing by Love in a grand boat. Love said, 'Richness, can you take me with you?' Richness answered, 'No, I can't...there is a lot of gold and silver in my boat. There is no place here for you.' Love decided to ask Vanity who was also passing by in a beautiful vessel, 'Vanity, please help me!' 'I can't help you Love...you are all wet and might damage my boat,' Vanity answered. Sadness was close by so Love asked for help, 'Sadness, let me go with you.' 'Oh...Love...I am so sad that I need to be by myself!' Happiness passed by Love too, but she was so happy that she did not even hear when Love called her! Suddenly, there was a voice, 'Come Love, I will take you.' It was an elder. Love felt so blessed and overjoyed that he even forgot to ask the elder her name. When they arrived at dry land, the elder went her own way. Love realizing how much he owed the elder asked Knowledge, another elder, 'Who helped me?' 'It was Time,' Knowledge answered. 'Time?' asked Love. 'But why did Time help me?' Knowledge smiled with deep wisdom and answered, 'Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Love is.' Have a special day and live in the present moment. JUST IN TIME What better day to bring you a friendly Web site like Justsaywow.com than St. Valentine's Day? Are we looking out for you or what? Forget to buy that card? Too late to send roses? Well, this is the site to save you. Not only is it a place to go to get away from your stressful day at the office, but you can also send your sweetheart a virtual bouquet of blooming roses. This Web site offers the electronic greetings that have become so popular lately, but they're greetings with a twist. With music and animation added, these Funpages are sure to bring a smile to your face. Justsaywow is a site off the beaten path. Filled with fun images and music, these greetings are ones you can send to your friends and loved ones when you're looking for a different sort of greeting. Got a friend you want to inspire to exercise? Send him or her a Mouse Potato or an Exercise greeting. Want to let a loved one know you're thinking of him or her? Send a Candle of Love greeting to let him or her know you care. http://www.justsaywow.com/ MONEY DOESN'T GROW ON TREES There's nothing like opening up your mailbox and finding a stack of bills. Organizing them according to due dates, trying to figure out how to pay them all at once, remembering when to mail them--paying your bills is never fun. But we've got something to make it easier for you. While PayMyBills.com won't make your bills go away, this Web site has a great program to make the process a little less painful. PayMyBills.com has a service that organizes all your bills online, so you can pay them without leaving the computer. Here's how it works: You set it up so the site receives your paper bills. The bills are scanned and posted to your secure, personal Bill Management Center. You're notified via e-mail when bills arrive. You can review the bills online, and then schedule how much and when to pay. You can also print a hard copy of the bill or store it electronically for your records. Paying bills will probably never become your favorite hobby, but PayMyBills.com can make it less complicated and less time-consuming for you. The service will run you $8.95 a month, but if you're among the first 25,000 people to sign up before March 31, 2000, you can cash in on a special deal that will bring you the service free for two years. So there's no time to waste--you've got bills to pay! http://www.paymybills.com/ PURE AND SQUEAKY CLEAN On its home page, Pure MP3 offers, first and foremost, a definition of its site. It's a site that helps you find good music in the MP3 format, by providing lists of links to other MP3 Web sites that have the music you want. But it's also a site dedicated to keeping pornography of any kind from ruining your MP3 experience. What does it mean? It means you can safely browse to any link listed and know that you will not be bombarded with pornographic ads. You can rummage through all the wonderful music links, which are divided into musical categories. Pure MP3 also provides a Trading section, where you can find sites to trade MP3s with others of your listening persuasion. And you can do all of it knowing that you'll never once be led to a Web site that will offend you. Pure MP3 also offers several cool software applications sites that can help spruce up your listening power. You can download skins (background themes) for your various MP3 players and actually download some cool MP3 players as well. http://www.puremp3.org/ YOU NEED TO SHOP AROUND Looking to punch up your Web site with a slick new design? But what if you're not exactly creatively inclined? Where do you turn for the expertise you need? What you need is a community site of design businesses where prospective clients, experts, and design peers can gather together and exchange ideas and support. What you need is designshops.com. This Web site is a great place to find cool programs and products such as Web authoring tools, graphic programs, and multimedia applications. It's also a site to introduce you to the design shop you need to get your job done. Its Directory features more than 600 design shops for you to inspect and consider for your design needs. Designshops.com also features Web design news and feature articles to help you keep up on the latest trends. Its Features section provides a wealth of information you can search by subjects such as animation, graphics, HTML, Java, Web design, and more. You'll also find tutorials and product reviews. This site is a wonderful source of information from various companies that know design. If you want to hear what they're saying, then you should definitely check out this site.http://www.designshops.com/ MAY I TAKE YOUR ORDER? It's late and you just got home. It was a long day, and you can't stand the thought of cooking, but the idea of pizza for the third night in a row isn't very appetizing either. You don't feel like searching the yellow pages for your options, but what can you do? Simple--boot up that PC and surf over to Food.com. At Food.com you can check out which restaurants in your area will deliver right to your door. Or if carryout is your cup of tea, this Web site will give you the names of restaurants in town that will take your order right over the Internet. All you have to do is specify your home address, and Food.com provides you with a list of restaurants you can order from. For takeout, you must also specify how far you're willing to travel. Not sure what you're in the mood for? The eateries on the site also provide a menu for you to peruse, conveniently divided into dining categories such as appetizers, salads, entrees, sandwiches, and even specials. And the next time you can't decide where to go for that special evening, check out the site's Dining Guide. You can search for restaurants by zip code, city, or even cuisine. You'll get a list of restaurants along with their addresses and phone numbers, so no more driving around trying to find the perfect place. http://www.food.com/ TO CATCH A THIEF With everybody talking these days about the recent hacker attacks and wondering if their Web sites are safe and secure, it's easy to forget that security refers to more than the Internet. So while you're worrying about firewalls and encryption and hacker threats, remember that security applies to your home and office as well. Need some help? Check out ThiefBeware.com. This Web site helps you concentrate on physical, rather than virtual, security. Whether you need to protect expensive hardware, your grandmother's antique earrings, or your own loved ones, ThiefBeware has a system for you. Staying current on all the latest technological news and devices can keep a person pretty busy. By offering practical solutions to many of today's home and business security issues, this site will bring you up- to-date on the latest in safety. http://www.thiefbeware.com/
Laughter is the best medicine. And if that's truly the case, then you can consider Rinkworks.com your online drugstore of humor.
This site has a plethora of ways to try to tickle your funny bone. You'll find pages dedicated to really bad movies (you can even add your own comments), lampoons of popular literature, one-minute movie versions, jokes, and puzzles. If you're longing for your youth, you can even play Rock, Paper, Scissors, or Hangman.
Perhaps one of the most entertaining aspects of this Web site is known as The Dialectizer. Here, you can view your favorite (or not so favorite) Web site in a variety of interesting dialects (Redneck, Jive, Cockney, Elmer Fudd, Swedish Chef, Moron, or Pig Latin). For example, the TechRepublic title "Managing users who cry wolf" became "Managing usews who cwy wowf" with the Elmer Fudd "dialect."
This site also features reader polls, forums, greeting cards, and contests. So sit back and enjoy a laugh! http://www.rinkworks.com/
Are you looking for a long-lost friend? Do you need to know the address and phone number of a company that isn't in your hometown phonebook? Are you in charge of your 15-year high school reunion but no one seems to have the right addresses?
Switchboard.com offers solutions to these problems and more! Not only will it help you find that old college buddy, but you can also find directions to his house, a hotel to stay when you go to visit, and plenty of restaurants where you can have a good meal and spend some time catching up. Does your "missing person" live too far away to visit? Switchboard.com can help you send a gift instead, such as flowers or a nice bottle of wine.
This site also features a free personal home page builder and access to free online storage and free e-mail. You'll find message boards devoted to numerous topics as well as a specific Missing Persons section. You can create personalized maps and get directions, and the site offers many links for online shopping and other helpful sites, including Classmates.com (a great place to start for that reunion planning).
Instead of picking up the phone, you'll have to go online for this switchboard, but the results are even better--when was the last time an operator gave you detailed directions and a list of hotels in the area? http://switchboard.com/
Most tips are from TipWorld - http://www.tipworld.com :The Internet's #1 Source for Computer Tips, News, and Gossip