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SITES LET WEB BROWSERS KEEP UP APPEARANCE OF BEING NET-SAVVY : ROUNDUP OF SITES.

Byline: Joe Kilsheimer The Orlando Sentinel

If you have ever worried that the Internet is changing too fast, and that somehow you are missing something because you don't spend enough time on line, you can ease your mind.

There's no way you could keep up with everything that's happening in cyberspace even if you tried.

Believe me, I have tried.

But it is possible to make people think you know what's going on, or at least make yourself sound Net-savvy at parties.

You can achieve this happy state of affairs by making the rounds of the cool-site-of-the-day sites.

That's right. There is more than one cool-site-of-the-day site. In fact, there are dozens.

What they all have in common is a staff - or a single staffer - who spends a good portion of each day culling through new Web sites to pick ones that are unique, or at least different from the previous day. Usually, at the very top of the page, is a link that takes you to each day's featured selection.

Generally, the daily honorees employ the Internet's most sophisticated new tricks. You will find many with colorful animations and sounds. Most will have a new take on a familiar topic. But as with anything that tries to be different 365 days a year, you will see some clunkers.

Nonetheless, this is a good deal for the harried among us. Relying on Internet-savvy people to decide upon cool sites means you can impress your friends with much less Web surfing on your part.

Many of the cool-site-of-the-day sites also give you a way to nominate a site for daily honors. Who knows, maybe your site is next?

Here's a roundup of sites that feature 24 hours of fame, plus the sites they featured on the day I visited:

Cool Site of the Day. This is the original, the one that started the whole phenomenon.

This site is produced by staffers at Infinet Co., a large Internet services company in Norfolk, Va., whose main business is actually helping newspapers around the country establish their own Web sites.

There's a lot more here than just one simple link to another link each day. There are archives of cool sites, a list of Web events - updated daily, of course - and a list of serious tips on how to make your own site look good.

This site has become so famous that it teamed up with People magazine recently to pick a Cool Site of the Year. That was the Discovery Channel's Web site at http://www.discovery.com

Infinet's Cool Site of the Day can be found at http://cool.infi.net

On the day I was there, it sent me to Dr. Daniel's Movie Academy, a site produced by a physician in north Georgia who also happens to be a movie buff. It is sophisticated and colorful, and offers the doc's own critiques on new movies. Address: http://www.stairwell.com/doc

Cool Central Site of the Day. This site is more spare than the original site. It offers simply a link to its daily winner and four runners-up.

Address: http://www.coolcentral.com/day

Cool Central sent me to a very funny Web site named Main Sanitary Nag (Anagram Insanity). Enter a sentence or a few words and the site produces a list of anagrams. For my own name, I got a list of 17 anagrams. My favorite: Slime hire joke.

Address: http://www.infobahn.com/pages/anagram.html

Cool Site Central: By now you must be getting the idea that all these sites are similarly named. However, their sensibilities for what is cool are quite different.

This site sent me to Cat Stevens.com, which is devoted to the '70s-era folk singer who evidently has decided to attempt a comeback. It turns out that Stevens, who has converted to Islam and changed his name to Yusuf Islam, is going to try his comeback with an album of Bosnian songs and poems.

Cool Site Central's address is http://www.coolsitecentral.com

The Cat Stevens site: http://catstevens.com

Modest motto

Geek Site of the Day: You've got to love a site that proclaims as its motto: ``Because I am a loser and you are too.''

Geek sites of the day tend to be a little more science-oriented than cool sites. For example, I found myself at a site called Milan's Boron Nitride. The previous day's selections included sites titled Digital Images of Fish and Relativity, and Faster than Light Travel.

The Geek address is http://www.owlnet.rice.edu/(tilde)indigo/gsotd

(Hint: in the address above, replace (tilde) with a character found in the upper left of most computer keyboards.)

Milan's Boron Nitride: http://www2.gol.com/users/hubacek/bn.htm

Gamer's Zone Site of the Day. This is the place for computer game lovers. It leads you to a different computer game site every day. Most of the sites offer tips on how to play popular computer games such as Myst, Microsoft's Flight Simulator and Jazz Jackrabbitt, a kids game.

Address: http://www.worldvillage.com/wv/gamezone/html/gamepick.htm

Jazz Jackrabbit's page: http://www.norton-road.co.uk/jazz2

Macromedia's Shocked Site of the Day. If you have the Shockwave animation player on your machine, this site is worth a regular visit. The cutting edge of Web graphics are displayed here. The other day it sent me to a Web site for True Fiction Magazine, a Los Angeles radio show.

Address: http://www.macromedia.com/shockwave/epicenter/day

True Fiction's address: http://www.sirius.com/(tilde)truficma/ra dio/radio.html

Same Site of the Day: A parody of all the other cool-site-of-the-day sites, this one takes you nowhere. But it's pretty funny nonetheless.

Address: http://www.pnx.com/falken/samesite.html
COPYRIGHT 1997 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1997, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:BUSINESS
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Mar 3, 1997
Words:963
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