It rules e-tail, with 34 different product categories (including groceries; new and used cars could be next) yet stays true to its bookstore roots, with nifty features like Search Inside the Book, and the new AmazonConnect, which links you to blog posts from your favorite authors from the home page. Apple Movie Trailers
Coming attractions for movie buffs and reason enough to finally get that broadband connection. Blogger
The place to go to create your own blog; tools are powerful and easy to use, and it’s free. Craigslist
This wildly popular portal of classified ads serving more than 300 cities in the U.S. and across the globe recently expanded its real estate listings, and helps power HousingMaps a mash-up that locates properties for sale using Google Maps. (Craigslist charges fees to real estate brokers in New York and for job ads in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, but is otherwise free.) Drudge Report
Matt Drudge, newsbreaker, got more than 3.5 billion hits in the past year Ebay
The auction powerhouse keeps expanding its repertoire, allowing users to write blogs and create wikis (collaborative info-banks), and to “Skype” each other about individual items up for bid (i.e. use the Internet telephony service to place voice calls) ESPN
Best all-around sports site, with sports news, sports videos, sports columns and sports data galore. Honorable mention goes to MLB.com, which lets you watch baseball games that aren’t broadcast in your local TV market. The service’s success inspired CBS Sports to team up with NCAA to offer March Madness on Demand which drew 5 million viewers earlier this year.
This public showroom for personal pics is one of the fastest-growing social networks on the Web, and now it has a blog. Google
What started as the Web’s best search engine has become a jack-of-all-trades, offering all sorts of free applications, from Spreadsheets and Calendar to Picasa (for digital photos) and Gmail. There’s Google Scholar, which lets you search for academic papers on any topic, and Google Finance (nice charts!); Google Maps has inspired countless “mash-ups” including weatherbonk.com. Register for a free account and you can personalize your home page too. Click here, for a menu of features and services that have officially launched; go to Google Labs for the new stuff that’s still in beta (such as Spreadsheets). The unaffiliated (but lovingly devoted) Googletutor.com has helpful tips and advice for making the most of all things Google. Read more about some of Google’s latest-greatest features in the TIME archives. HowStuffWorks
Easy-breezy explanations of how things work, from money laundering to hybrid cars, game consoles to the human kidneys. The Internet Movie Database
Encyclopedia of entertainment that covers some 800,000 films, television shows and video game titles. Users help keep the Internet Movie Database current, submitting 16 million data bits in 2005 alone. Lifehacker
Computer-tech tips and tricks to help you save time, and keep you sane; sister-blog Gizmodo gives up all the latest gadget news. Too mainstream for you? Best to head over to our favorite geek-convention,Slashdot.org. The Museum of Modern Art
Now available: MoMA Audio, a selection of museum tours as downloadable podcasts. Wear your own earbuds as you walk through the special exhibitions or the permanent collection; separate audio tours are available for kids and for the visually impaired.
More than 60,000 DVD titles available to rent, from classics to art-house flicks to major studio releases. Digital delivery is scheduled to start early next year, but don’t expect those red mailers to be phased out anytime soon. National Public Radio
Not to miss: NPR podcasts, NPR music, NPR This I Believe, NPR Stories. The Onion
Long before The Daily Show, long before Stephen Colbert, there was The Onion, and it’s still hilarious, and now you don’t need a subscription to read the fake news archives. Podcasts are also now available. Rotten Tomatoes
Gathers movie reviews from far and wide, and reports box office and other stats; flicks receive a critical average on the 100-point “tomatometer.” Movies.com also gets a nod for streaming episodes of “Statler & Waldorf: From the Balcony,” an Ebert & Roeper spoof starring those lovable muppet-curmudgeons. Shopzilla
New comparison shopping sites keep popping up (Become.com isn’t bad) but nothing beats Shopzilla‘s search tools and merchant ratings. Technorati
Blog finder that keeps getting better while the blogosphere gets bigger. Searches are faster and more accurate, and now you can personalize the home page; a new Discover section provides a round-up of top posts by topic. Newcomer Sphere is also worth a look.
Television Without Pity
Bitingly funny TV show recaps. The Smoking Gun
Continues to document interesting news (sample headline: “Six Skulls Found in Strippers Home”) and get the occasional big scoop, like outing writer James Frey. Wikipedia
A real Web wonder: this massive, collaborative online encyclopedia is written, edited, and maintained primarily by volunteers; some 1.3 million articles in English, and millions more in 228 other languages. Yahoo!
Arguably Google’s toughest competition for top Web property. Check out the new My Web 2.0 service, which incorporates the social bookmarking activities of the recently-acquired del.icio.us (you get to see where other people are surfing, and share your own favorite links). Maps.yahoo.com/traffic offers a visual guide to gridlock situations on major roads in 20 metropolitan areas; Yahoo Photos offers new ways to share images (more advanced search features, tagging and other tools); and the new Yahoo Tech page cherry-picks from CNET‘s playbook. Earlier this summer, Yahoo partner site fifaworldcup.yahoo.com scored with video highlights and a live MatchCast. Zappos.com
Simply the best place to shop for shoes online, with stellar customer service and free shipping all the time.