As vast and seemingly limitless as the internet is, sometimes you just don’t know what URL to type into that bar up top. When you run out of Facebook/Myspace notifications to go through and you’ve already checked your email 17 times, what then? Well running this site has turned me into a very experienced internet browser. So I want to pass along some of the tricks I’ve learned so that you can better use the World Wide Web. There is SO MUCH that you can learn and experience just from sitting in that computer chair so start now:
Stumble Upon (SU)
StumbleUpon is a social bookmarking site at the root, but it has infinity + 100 other tools at your disposal. When you sign up for an account on SU, you put check marks next to all of your interests. And I mean every single interest you can think of. After that, you just click “Stumble” and it will bring you to a random site that is relevant to one or more of your interests.
You can also choose what kind of media you want to find: pictures, videos, news, wiki, blogs, music, etc. Google is an inferior method for finding sites that you actually want to look at. Stumble will bring you to places on the internet that you didn’t even know you wanted to go to! (But you did deep inside)
For every site that you go to, you can ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’ the site so that SU gets a continually more accurate reading of your interests. Eventually you get to a point where you’ll have too many sites to keep up with. Your days of internet boredom are over.
Best of all, SU has a toolbar for Firefox that places all of those buttons at the top of the browser so you can control your stumbling from any site on the web. You can find it here. If you don’t have Firefox, download it here. It is by far the best and most versatile browser available.
Find Other Blogs That You Love
Start a bookmarks folder called ‘Blogs’ or whatever you want and start finding blogs that spark your interest to add to it. Blogs are no longer just a bunch of people whining about how their days go. Blogs are not like Xanga. They are the most rapidly growing sector of the web and have more knowledge and information on them than any other digital format out there. Best of all, the good ones are updated daily! And there are blogs on literally every single topic under the sun.
Finding Blogs That Interest You:
1. Technorati – Use this site to search the blogosphere with keywords for article relevant to your interests from all over. The more established the blog, the more likely they are to come up first in the search results.
2. Google Blog Search – Although Google does not specialize in blogs, they pretty much are good at everything. This site uses google’s search engine to crawl through blogs using your keywords.
If you can’t find a blog on your topic, well you’ve just found an untouched niche that you can pounce on! Which leads me to the next item…
Start Your Own Site/Blog
Sites like WordPress and Blogger make creating your own blog easy and free. You can write about anything you want. Please don’t just rant but you can if you really really want to. Take it from me, blogging is a never ending process that will always give you something to do. Whether it be perfecting the layout of your site or writing that article you’ve had in your head all week, you WILL be busy.
Making your own blog is especially rewarding when you start getting constant traffic everyday and you realize that people are reading your stuff! You will be addicted to checking your traffic stats and responding to comments on your site. There is no easier way to gain influence over others and grow a fan base than starting a successful blog.
Best of all, you can turn your blog into cash. Once blogs become popular, companies will want to advertise on your site. Or you can sign up for affiliate programs, sells your own products or refer people to Amazon.com and get a cut of what they buy. There are a million ways to monetize your site and all stemming from you wanting to share your thoughts with the world. Pretty cool, huh?
Great Links For Beginner Bloggers:
– ‘First Site Guide‘
Watch Movies and TV Online
If you don’t know how, refer to our ‘Guide to Online Streaming’ to learn how.
Resort to Low-Brow Entertainment
– ’99 Things You Should Have Already Experienced On The Internet Unless You’re a Loser or Old or Something’ —- Go to youshouldhaveseenthis.com and check out the 99 most popular “things” on the internet according to this guy names Greg Rutter. It’s got every viral piece of entertainment on the internet that your aunt is ever going to email to you. You’ve probably seen a lot of it but you will definitely find something you have not seen and should.
– Chat with Strangers! Go to omegle.com, click ‘Start Chat’ and immediately talk to a stranger from anywhere in the world completely anonymously. Suggestions for things to do on this site:
1) Take on different personality with each person you talk to and see how well you can pull it off
2) Seduce a stranger
3) Tell them about the blog you just created and get your traffic going
4) Blow off some steam and tell them what’s going on in your life
– TextsFromLastNight.com — Read the ridiculous things that people text late at night when their minds are just not right…
– FMyLife.com – Read about other people’s misfortunes to make your current bored state sound not so bad in comparison
– FailBlog.org – A bunch of pictures of other people’s “failures.” My favorites are anyone that tries to go over a jump on a bike or skateboard; you always know it’s going to be good.
Get off of the internet!
Even being as great as it is, the internet has its limitations when you’re feeling bored as hell. You can only do SO much from a computer desk. You just checked Facebook 2 minutes ago and I’m pretty sure the world won’t end if you don’t comment back within three seconds of someone writing on your wall. So quit the browser and go outside!
If you still can’t think of any fun things to do off of the computer, check out our ‘Fun Things to Do’ section.