Few internet resources have managed to influence me and my life.
Here they are, most recent on top
(not including web resources that I have started and been maintaining myself, which undoubtedly changed me, too :-).
arXiv preprint archive and all the traditional journals that had become available electronically over the few preceding years. Although instant electronic access to scientific articles is merely a convenience (comparing to a trip to a library), to me it has been a big enough convenience that has encouraged to read much more.|
Wikipedia, the first encyclopedia that I could actually read. Mind you, I had owned several paper encyclopedias before, but found them of virtually no use.
Lib.Ru helped me rediscover fiction books after many years of almost exclusively browsing the Web.|
I finally stopped trying to make a large community site based on the OpenACS toolkit. The toolkit was a geekhole, not really accessible to non-programmers. I wasted two years of time (as a hobby activity) before realizing this.|
I discovered Slashdot.|
Jakob Nielsens Alertbox column
has improved my understanding of the Web and design of my pages.
primer on how to be a graduate student in physical science or engineering
by Chuck Doswell. I read it from first to last byte and found enlightening,
in a sense.
Radio Liberty (in Russian): listen
to the life channel or records from the audio archive while having meals
in your office.|
CNN.com: news. Became less interesting to me in 2001.
Photo.net: a photography community.
Its Q&A Forum kept me coming back every day for several years.
I took the design style of my pages from its founder Philip Greenspun.|
All the other thousands of sites that I visited or used were no more than glimpses on the sky of my life.
Tools and resources I use regularly
- Search: Google. Besides searching for information, Im also using the search engine to check the usage and relative frequency of English words and phrases. Im a non-native speaker; these searches help me figure what usage is more correct in English. The Internet indexed by the search engine is way larger than any dictionary, which allows to solve many language questions by just looking at the statistics and diving into the search results for a few examples. (For the sake of history, lets mention I used AltaVista before Google added search for exact phrases, which was around 2002, I think.)
- Wayback Machine: if a site or page you are looking for is gone from its original URL, you can probably find its archive copy here.
- Looking up acronyms and abbreviations: English | Russian
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