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What is the most valuable site on the web?

By Simonconnell in Internet
Sat Apr 07, 2001 at 01:06:16 AM EST
Tags: Internet (all tags)

What do you consider to be the website that contributes the most to the internet?

It started off as a misreading of a newspaper headline, which sent me off on a completely different track. What does each individual webite contribute to the internet as a whole? This is about more than just visitor numbers. I visit up to a hundred websites in a day through casual surfing, but how many of those do I leave feeling I have truly learned something, not just viewed 'pretty' HTML/Java? Very few. How many do I actively want to become part of and contribute to? Even fewer. So this is my question: Which website (if any) do you really feel gives the most to the internet community? If you could rate websites on this basis between 1 and 100, where would your favourite websites come?


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What is the most valuable site on the web? | 67 comments (51 topical, 16 editorial, 0 hidden)
Google (4.41 / 17) (#1)
by maleficent on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 07:21:21 PM EST

It is the best site for finding information that you want. Fill out a form and click a time or two and you can find out nearly any public information you desire.

Easily (5.00 / 1) (#2)
by weirdling on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 07:32:59 PM EST

I use google hundreds of times a day. Without google, my K5 posts would have a lot fewer facts in them...

I'm not doing this again; last time no one believed it.
[ Parent ]
hmm.. (4.50 / 2) (#6)
by Seumas on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 08:04:41 PM EST

Well, that doesn't stop me . . . ;)
I just read K5 for the articles.
[ Parent ]
assuming... (4.50 / 2) (#12)
by ism on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 08:37:11 PM EST

that what you are retelling are, indeed, facts. The internet may know all, but what it knows may not be true. =)

[ Parent ]
I'm shocked and disturbed... (none / 0) (#37)
by superflex on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 11:53:59 AM EST

by this statement. Are you trying to tell us that the internet can be wrong!?


[ Parent ]

I'm dazed and confused... (none / 0) (#64)
by Hillgiant on Wed Apr 11, 2001 at 11:10:38 AM EST

I read on the internet that the internet is wrong.
But I don't beleive everything I read. =P

"It is impossible to say what I mean." -johnny
[ Parent ]

Best used (4.50 / 4) (#28)
by Mashx on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 05:18:11 AM EST

..in this mode.
[ Parent ]
Exactly (none / 0) (#33)
by Anonymous 242 on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 08:55:30 AM EST

I could name fifty or a hundred sites that I think are important or that contain important information. The vast majority of these sites have a common theme: I either found them via a google search or linked from a page I found through a google search or linked through a page I found linked by a page I found on a google search. . .

Once upon a time, my favorite search engine was altavista. Then google came along. Pagerank makes an incredible difference. Perhaps someday raging will catch up with the number of pages searched, indexed and page ranked, but until then google reigns supreme. (Meta-search engines like c4 lose my interest because of the large number of graphics and ads they use. I don't begrudge them ads, after all they have to pay google and most of the other search engines in order to incorporate their search engines into the meta-search. That said, google is quick, image light and almost always has the best results.)

[ Parent ]

obvious answer (3.14 / 7) (#3)
by Seumas on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 07:57:44 PM EST

Kuro5hin. Duh.
I just read K5 for the articles.
yep, Google (2.75 / 4) (#4)
by jij on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 07:59:14 PM EST

Google gets my vote and I'd rate it at 95 out of 100 (about 5% of the time I don't find what I'm looking for).

"people who thinks quotes are witty are fucking morons" - turmeric

not many (3.75 / 4) (#5)
by Seumas on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 08:03:57 PM EST

In an average day, I visit K5 the most (the submission queue is my homepage). Every few days, I check up on Slashdot. I do my searching through Google. I do my grocery shopping through Webvan. Other than this, all of my surfing tends to be tunneled in to our intranet from home (I telecommute) using our internal tools and resources.

Sure, there are the occasional trips to CNN, the BBC and the occasional reference site, but the ones I mentioned above are the only ones I visit most often and, thus, would have to say I find most valuable.

Oh -- and I visit www.papajohnsonline.com to order pizza (I hate dealing with phone calls when I can do it through email or the computer!).

Of course, the real answer is that there is no one "ultimate" website that adds the most value. The whole point of the internet is to provide a decentralized yet central resource of information and resources. There are fabulous online dictionaries, encyclopedias, medical repositories, technical guides, historical information, educational tools and a million other things. It's impossible to say that any one site contributes "the most" or "the greatest".
I just read K5 for the articles.

Heh (none / 0) (#25)
by delmoi on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 10:15:27 PM EST

the submission queue is my homepage

I haddn't thought of that :P
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Great Googly Moogly (3.66 / 9) (#8)
by SPrintF on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 08:21:37 PM EST

Google is number one, of course. It gives you a way to find every other useful site.

SomethingAwful.com (3.83 / 6) (#9)
by Delirium on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 08:30:30 PM EST

There can only be one.

Too many to list (4.00 / 3) (#16)
by tnt on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 09:00:32 PM EST

If you are also considering websites that are very specific, in some subject area [like Linux, Computer Graphics, Mathematics, programming, games, HCI, etc etc], then there are too many to list. (Although, if you pick any specific subject area, I can [likely] name quite a few.)

If you instead are only considering gerenal websites, then my list would be: Google. [A short list.] Especially since they recently got the Usenet archive from Deja, and are starting to offer translations. What they they need to next is archive mailing lists too (like GeoCrawler does), get/create an intellegent image indexing system, and start indexing even more types of data -- various movie formats, various sound & music formats, various document formats, etc. (Of course, without built-in meta data pertaining to these other formats, the indexing might not be very good, so an intellegent system might need to be gotten/created to establish more meta data connections.)

     Charles Iliya Krempeaux, B.Sc.
  Kuro5hin user #279

PriceWatch.com wins hands down.. (3.66 / 3) (#19)
by Sheepdot on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 09:26:52 PM EST

It is irrefutable evidence of a working capitalist system. No externalities, no government influence. Even David Held couldn't touch PriceWatch with a 10 foot stick.

I will go there and there only when purchasing a new computer and will *always* build my own computer till the day the government starts interfering and I either cannot financially or physically build my own computer anymore.

Aha! (5.00 / 2) (#29)
by Mashx on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 05:20:13 AM EST

I spy a US-centric post!

Pricewatch is a great site, but unfortunately until most of the retailers start to ship outside the US or North America, it is pretty useless for me.
[ Parent ]

Good point, My bad.. (none / 0) (#35)
by Sheepdot on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 11:37:40 AM EST

Didn't even think of that. I bet if you kept searching you might find a few that do.

[ Parent ]
Probably (none / 0) (#38)
by Mashx on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 12:43:43 PM EST

But it is quite disheartening with the number that claim to want to sell to international customers in the future. I have been on lists of some companies that have been promising to do this for a couple of years and it just gets boring in the end.

If Pricewatch could sort on International as well, then it would be as useful as Google and as you said a prime example...
[ Parent ]

Easy now (1.00 / 6) (#42)
by Bob Abooey on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 05:18:01 PM EST

Lets be careful about what we say about the good ol US eh... remember... we kicked your arse in 1776 and we can surely do it again.

Comments on politics from a man whose life seems to revolve around his lunch menu just do not hold weight. - Casioitan
[ Parent ]
But! (none / 0) (#59)
by Mr Tom on Mon Apr 09, 2001 at 06:17:54 AM EST

Have you tried www.pricewatch.co.uk? :-)

(It's not dissimilar, although, as ever, stuff is more expensive than in the States..) :-/

-- Mr_Tom<at>gmx.co.uk

I am a consultant. My job is to make your job redundant.
[ Parent ]

But But! (none / 0) (#60)
by Mashx on Mon Apr 09, 2001 at 02:05:48 PM EST

If I hadn't had a brain tumour for breakfast a couple of weeks back I would have thought of that.

Ta Mr Tom! :O)
[ Parent ]

My choice (3.33 / 3) (#23)
by darthaya on Wed Apr 04, 2001 at 10:12:04 PM EST

It is Yahoo. The biggest, best, most influential internet portal.

And I use my.yahoo.com everyday!

My Favourites (3.20 / 5) (#26)
by FeersumAsura on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 03:29:54 AM EST

In order of time spent per month and taking other factors into account my list is
1. www.kuro5hin.org
2. slashdot.org
3. www.keenspot.com and related sites
4. www.google.com -need to search
5. www.ntk.net
6. www.linuxtoday.com

Yes I admit it, I like /. It has more news and less introspection but I still spend more time on k5. Also www.poisonedminds.com has to be the best comic.

I'm so pre-emptive I'd nuke America to save time.
Sluggy (5.00 / 2) (#30)
by B'Trey on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 06:22:20 AM EST

Poisoned Minds is cool but the best comic has to be Sluggy, with User Friendly close behind.

[ Parent ]
Goats! (none / 0) (#40)
by ODiV on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 01:57:16 PM EST

What about Goats? I'd put that sometimes higher/sometimes lower than Sluggy, depending on the storyline at the time.

Penny-Arcade? Sinfest? Haven't read it in awhile, but it was alright.

[ odiv.net ]
[ Parent ]
Who's ready to get XTREME?!! (none / 0) (#44)
by Holloway on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 06:06:03 PM EST

No one visits Spacemoose anymore but I do. Not that it's ever updated. But it's a ritual, you see.

Extreme Spacemoose [A] and Smash your ugly face in are classics (note the status of Space's pants in the fifth frame).

== Human's wear pants, if they don't wear pants they stand out in a crowd. But if a monkey didn't wear pants it would be anonymous

[ Parent ]

Spacemoose (none / 0) (#48)
by ODiV on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 10:08:11 PM EST

I've read every single Spacemoose comic. :) I wasn't going to mention it though because of forum appropriateness, etc... As long as we're bringing up Spacemoose, we might as well mention The Thin H Line too. (warning: adult content, nudity, evil, blah blah blah)

[ odiv.net ]
[ Parent ]
Comics (none / 0) (#54)
by Rocky on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 03:37:40 PM EST

I'm sorry, but I find User Friendly to be badly drawn and forced.

I do like my Space Moose and Thin H Line (links not provided for a reason).

Another good one is Acid Reflux

If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?
- Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)
[ Parent ]
Without a doubt... (3.85 / 7) (#31)
by Pseudonym on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 07:56:24 AM EST


Oh, you meant web sites? Sorry, my mistake.

sub f{($f)=@_;print"$f(q{$f});";}f(q{sub f{($f)=@_;print"$f(q{$f});";}f});
What was the most valuable site on the web? (4.00 / 4) (#32)
by evvk on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 08:28:17 AM EST

For me, that was certainly Eric Weisstein's late Mathworld. Due to the site being shut down, I will never, ever buy anything from CRC Press, and no one should! (And luckily I never have.)

none, because (3.50 / 4) (#36)
by mami on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 11:37:59 AM EST

in 1995/6 - favorite site yahoo
in 1997/8 - favorite site altavista, deja-news
nowadays - google.com

They helped me to find what I consider to be the best site at any given moment for any given problem - til I need the next best site for the next moment and the next problem. A never ending story of best sites...

Brittanica (3.00 / 3) (#39)
by rkenski on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 01:21:20 PM EST

Google is sure one of the best things on internet. Another very important site is Brittanica. It is the biggest source of credible information on the web.

The Machine (2.75 / 4) (#41)
by rebelcool on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 04:01:03 PM EST

The Machine. Yes, it's my own site. The software behind it has gotten me my current job and been personally rewarding beyond all belief. Plus I've learned gobs of knowledge from it.

COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site

My favorite (3.57 / 7) (#43)
by fluffy grue on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 05:49:12 PM EST

This is my absolute favorite webpage. Unfortunately, you need to be a Netscape user to view it.
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]

=^D (4.00 / 2) (#47)
by Mr. Excitement on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 09:36:46 PM EST

Important Sites:

Tons of fun but eats up all your free time:

In sheer terms of contributing cool things, SourceForge is my nominee. But most of my "favorite sites are strictly valuable in the sense that they're fun or interesting, but Horribly Evil if you're trying to get anything done. ;)

The morbidly fascinating:

  • www.snopes.com, San Fernando Valley Folklore Society's urban legends debunking page. (Last I checked, it had some annoying MIDI playing in the background, so you may want to turn off your speakers if at work ;) Also see the AFU archive at www.urbanlegends.com.
Other wonderful time-sappers (valuable? nah ;) : I'd mention more, but my brain's on fire...

1 141900 Mr. Excitement-Bar-Hum-Mal-Cha died in The Gnomish Mines on level 10 [max 12]. Killed by a bolt of lightning - [129]
My favorite site (3.50 / 2) (#49)
by Blarney on Thu Apr 05, 2001 at 11:51:56 PM EST

I check out scene.textfiles.com every day. Wonderful textfiles! Ranty, random, occasionally informative. Just like K5, except that you don't have to contribute anything. Just enjoy, kind of like watching TV.

I've got a TV, You've got a TV,
We've ALL got TV's, big f**king deal.
And when I look at my TV, these are the words I say:
dammit, dammit, dammit, dammit
(Iggy and the Stooges)

Useful Sites (4.00 / 3) (#50)
by Unless on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 12:20:24 AM EST

I'm always pleasantly surprised when I see a site that really absolutely has its shit together. It knows exactly what it does, and it does it rather better than I imagined possible. The examples that spring to mind most immediately are the Internet Movie Database and Dictionary.com. Babelfish is also quite well done.

A couple others that contribute something worthwhile, and seem to value substance over style, are The Lurker Lounge and ClassicGaming.com.

a few from my list (2.00 / 2) (#51)
by Kaki Nix Sain on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 02:33:48 AM EST

google babebelfish m-w currency conversion search for searches file conversion philosopy salon, weather channel, e2, slash, some slashclones, sneakemail, .gov statistics sites, oh yeah this cool thing ...

favorite site (3.33 / 3) (#52)
by YelM3 on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 03:12:41 AM EST

I almost never get tired of e2. Often I go there before a search engine when I'm looking for info on a specific topic. A brilliant idea for sure.

It should be.... (3.00 / 3) (#53)
by k5er on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 05:32:50 AM EST

What are the most valuable sites on the net? No one site can be the most important site.

My favorite sites depend on what I need. Some include

  • Google.com - Great for searching
  • Classifieds2000.com - ummmmm classifieds.
  • Slashdot.org - Tech news
  • Kuro5hin.org - Discussions about stuff
  • yellowpages.com - phone numbers
  • Dictionary.com - proper spelling / definitions
  • CNN.com - News
  • linux.com - Linux stuff
  • viatech.com - Nvidia.com - Creative.com (For drivers)

    Searching is important, hence google, corporate sites are important, they give me my latest drivers, etc, etc....

    .....who am I kidding, the most important site on the net is mine, heh!
    Long live k5, down with CNN.

  • Body Modification Ezine (1.66 / 3) (#55)
    by kimbly on Fri Apr 06, 2001 at 08:04:46 PM EST

    Body Modification Ezine is the only site I actually have a paying subscription to. They focus on piercing, scarification, tatoos, suspensions, etc. It's HUGE. They have thousands of pictures, hundreds of community-submitted stories, streaming radio interviews, an online store, plus their "IAM" site which hosts over six thousand people's home pages. When they recently had financial trouble, I even sent them some money just to help keep them going.

    Surprised and a Little Interested... (4.10 / 10) (#56)
    by gnomon on Sat Apr 07, 2001 at 05:04:13 AM EST

    I'm a computer geek of pretty high order - I won't use something if I don't understand how it works, and this has prompted me to read a great deal (papers by C. E. Shannon, A. Turing, A. Church, H. Curry, D. E. Knuth; more RFCs than I can admit to without shame; most of the classic books (K&R; the Dragon book; etc.); etc.) - and I evangelize the potential and wonderful power of the internet whenever I get the chance. I really do love computers.

    However, I think that the sites commonly mentioned under this request are not the most important ones out there by a long shot. Technical information, humour sites and the like are great, of course, and search engines are incredibly important, but those aren't the most important resources available online.

    I'm extremely surprised to see that no one has mentioned the gigantic, wonderful e-text archives out there:

    People are surrounded so often by the written word that they don't seem to register the very magic of it anymore. Stop for a moment and adjust your perception: thanks to the written word, I can travel back to just about any point in recorded history and get a feel for the culture, the language, the important events of the then-present day. I can hear the thoughts of authors who lived and died hundreds of years before myself, and hopefully absorb some benefit from them. I can get inside the thoughts of another person across barriers of time and distance. The written word is frozen thought, and is pure magic - the closest the human race has come to achieving telepathy and time travel. By reading the research of someone else, I can expand my own mind and contribute back to the body of knowledge possessed by humanity; by reading the stories of someone else, I can stretch my mind and live life more fully.

    The internet can connect me to a large portion of the contemporary world nearly instantaneously. E-text archives let me connect, as much as is possible, with the past, too. There is nothing that I can think of that is more important.

    Most valuable? (4.50 / 6) (#57)
    by cr0sh on Sat Apr 07, 2001 at 01:55:56 PM EST

    I would have to say that currently the most valuable sites are those like k5 and /. - why?

    Because they promote Free Speech - honest, free discussions, about nearly anything (k5 more so than /. - only because /. caters to a slightly different crowd). I have seen other sites running both Scoop and / that cater to widely varied interests, but they all form communities.

    These sites are the "town squares" of the internet, a place where people can mingle in a virtual realm, see viewpoints from all sides (if they wish), and respond in kind. If they don't like what someone is saying, they can either moderate, or come up with a better argument: "The cure for bad speech is more speech" (or something like that...

    The sites that use a form of moderation are the best, as they allow others to tell the cranks from those who can argue effectively, which makes for a higher quality discussion site. Many "normal" news sites could take a pointer from this in regards to thier "talk back" discussion groups which crop up on articles - generally those who really have something valuable to say are drowned out by trolls, instead of rising to the top where their opinions can be heard.

    These sites are creating a "quite" revolution of sorts within the internet community - some are on the verge of being a real political force, which can affect the real world (indeed, politians are idiots not to adopt similar type sites for themselves).

    What other sites would I rate high?

    I would have to say formost Google - as a generla search engine it wins hands down. However, I would also have to rate sites dabbling in the documentation of the so-called "invisible web" as being invaluable - oftentimes these sites are the only link between the general internet, and isolated "islands" of data that exist out there.

    I would also have to rate some .mil sites as being important - they allow the public (when the public finds them, that is) to see a side of life not generally known on the outside. Interesting is the artwork at dia.mil...

    Textfile sites are valuable in that they preserve a history of online discussion, of a sort. Many preserve articles from the really old BBS days, that are still fascinating reads, even today.

    There are a few outstanding commerce sites - I rate Pricewatch as being the most useful and valuable - allowing citizens (ne, "consumers" - I HATE that word) to get the best bang for thier buck...

    Most important site on the web? (none / 0) (#58)
    by DJBongHit on Mon Apr 09, 2001 at 01:19:06 AM EST

    Come on, people... is this even a question? It's a well known fact that the most important, influential, interesting, and powerful site on the web is Smokedot. Were it not for Smokedot, the web would not exist as we know it today. The world economy hinges on the number of pageviews it recieves and the submissions queue is an elite channel of communication between only the most powerful political figures.

    So stop asking these ridiculous questions and go read it! :)


    GNU GPL: Free as in herpes.

    Craig's List (none / 0) (#61)
    by brainwane on Tue Apr 10, 2001 at 07:43:24 AM EST

    Craig's List is a terrific resource for finding just about anything in the San Francisco Bay Area and elsewhere (including Boston and Sydney). I found my futon -- mattress and frame! -- for $50 on Craig's List, delivery included!
    Your chicken, your egg, your problem.
    For me it's my.yahoo.com (none / 0) (#62)
    by Mantrid on Tue Apr 10, 2001 at 09:01:12 AM EST

    But that's just because my email is there. It is a handy little portal for me, plus I can check my email on my cellphone.

    Most important site depends on what I want. Some days Something Awful is what I need, sometimes I read Rush, sometimes it's IGN or whatever I need at the time.

    The banking website that I use has also been invaluable, to check balances and pay bills.

    Lately it's been The MLS Listings which is an invaluable service to me.

    BBC (2.00 / 2) (#63)
    by strumco on Wed Apr 11, 2001 at 10:23:24 AM EST

    My first port of call in the morning is http://news.bbc.co.uk.

    Taken together, I believe that the BBC sites constitute one of the jewels of the Web - and there's no advertising (except for beeb.com).



    Umm... important sites on the web. (none / 0) (#65)
    by dreid on Mon Apr 16, 2001 at 02:13:12 PM EST

    I'm just gonna give you guys a simple list (You all know what the comment is about):
    Ordered from greatest to least.
    1. breezy - My best friends' weblog.
    2. /. - My favorite source of geek news.
    3. k5 - If you don't know this one you should be hit in the head with something heavy.
    4. The Register - Nerd news from the UK, (and BOFH of course)
    5. Deviant Art - Amazing artwork from various people (and some that is crap (like mine)).
    6. Exposure Film Making - Stuff for broke ass film makers.
    I was gonna try and make that a top ten list. It would seem i failed.

    Google (4.00 / 2) (#66)
    by eean on Mon Apr 16, 2001 at 09:04:33 PM EST

    Before Google, it was so very hard to find anything. It still is, but at least I don't get distracted by all the shiny things like on other search engines. And putting up the parts of the page that have the words in question is so useful.

    Google doesn't actually contribute much if any content, but they do add a lot of value to the internet. If you can't find stuff, whats the point?

    Google (none / 0) (#67)
    by lokmant on Mon Apr 23, 2001 at 07:47:56 AM EST

    Google .. the most useful site is the site that finds you the most useful sites. Hence google.

    "it's recursive, baby!"

    Lok -silent dreams-
    "fashionably sensitive, but too cool to care" (jewel)

    What is the most valuable site on the web? | 67 comments (51 topical, 16 editorial, 0 hidden)
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