From:         Patrick Douglas Crispen 
Subject:      TOURBUS -- 5 FEB 03 -- THE NEXT 21, PART THREE


The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2239
Copyright © Bob Rankin and Patrick Crispen - All rights reserved

Howdy, y'all, and greetings once again from deep behind the orange curtain in beautiful Irvine, California, a town made entirely out of cheese and Legos. ["Mmmm ... Legos!"]

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On with the show ...

A couple weeks ago we started talking about "The Next 21," a collection of 21 really cool Web sites that didn't make my first "Top 21" list simply because I ran out of room. For those who missed the first two posts -- which you can find in the archives at -- here are the 10 sites we have visited so far:

1. --
2. Slashdot --
3. Yahoo Whats New --
4. Google Browser Buttons --
5. PopCap Games --
6. Coffee Break Arcade --
7. Internet Movie Database --
8. Metacritic --
9. TechTV --
10. MERLOT --

And here are the next five:

11. The Schrock Guide

You can't talk about educational resources on the Internet without mentioning Kathy Schrock's Guide for Educators. The Guide is a free, categorized list of over 2,000 Web sites useful for enhancing curriculum and professional growth. [Think Yahoo or Google Directory for educators.] Best of all, Schrock updates the list DAILY to include the best new sites for teaching and learning.

You can browse through Kathy Schrock's Guide for Educators by subject area (just click on the appropriate subject on the homepage) or alphabetically (just click on the "Alphabetic Index" button in the middle of the homepage). Schrock also offers some wonderful "teacher helpers" on the right side of the page, tools and gadgets that can help make life in the classroom (or around the dinner table) a little less stressful.

And, as long as we are talking about educational resources, I should also mention ...

12. Rubistar

Rubistar is a free, online, rubric-creating tool designed to help educators who want to use rubrics in the classroom but don't have the time to develop them from scratch. The site doesn't look like much, but it is actually quite helpful.

The site offers pre-slugged rubrics for a variety of activities, and you can use pull-down lists to order the categories you wish to assess. If all this sounds like gibberish to you, you probably should take a look at Rubistar's free tutorial first. You can find it at

13. AccuWeather

There are a BUNCH of online weather sites, but one of my favorites is AccuWeather. They're the folks who give you the "RealFeel" forecasts that tell you what the temperature outside actually feels like. For example, it is currently 42 degrees Fahrenheit (6 Celsius) in beautiful Irvine, California. But according to AccuWeather, it feels like it is 45 (7).

I never knew I had it so good. :P

Seriously, though, key in your US zip code or city and state into the white search box on the left side of the AccuWeather homepage to get an in-depth, local forecast.

The link for world (non-US) forecasts is right below that white search box ... although for some odd reason AccuWeather considers Canada to be separate from the world. That aside, I am really impressed with the quantity of weather reports available on the AccuWeather site. Any site that can show me an 8 day forecast for Erevoulay, Vanuatu, deserves a thumbs up ... even if the site thinks Canada is located on an entirely different planet.

14. My Yahoo!

Yeah, portals got a bad reputation after the dot com crash. Deservedly so. But there is still one portal that I love, one that I visit every day: My Yahoo!

My Yahoo! is sort of like a personal, online newspaper that you can COMPLETELY customize. With a free Yahoo account (just click on the "Sign Up Now" button on the My Yahoo! homepage), you can customize your My Yahoo! page to display the latest news, stock information, weather reports, and sports scores that interest YOU.

In fact, expect to spend at least half an hour setting up and customizing My Yahoo! the first time you login. Remember: the "Edit" button is your friend. :)


Our final stop of the day -- man, was this post short or WHAT? -- is at the 800 pound gorilla of software download sites: Part of CNET's family of sites, has an absurdly large collection of freeware and shareware programs, most submitted directly by the program manufacturers. is set up like a directory (like Yahoo), so you can either search for a particular program or browse by category or subcategory.

Best of all, realizes that there are still people out there who haven't yet succumbed to the power that is Microsoft. So offers downloads for Windows, Mac, Linux, and handhelds (Palm OS and Windows CE).

That's it for today. 15 down, six to go. Oh, and here's a hint about number 21: you can do anything at this site, anything at all. :P

Have a safe and happy week, and we'll talk again soon.

The Internet Tourbus - U.S. Library of Congress ISSN #1094-2239
Copyright © Bob Rankin and Patrick Crispen - All rights reserved
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