While most of us use Wikipedia or Google when searching for information, the Internet offers a smorgasbord of search engines, dictionaries, reference desks and databases that have organized and archived information for quick and easy searches. Here are some reference sites covering specific genres, exclusive to topics you may not have thought of.
Just for Fun
Search for unique profanity, sex terms and ridiculously long words here.
1. Roger’s Profanisaurus: Have fun looking up profane words at “the ultimate swearing dictionary.”
2. Sexual Dictionary: Look up quotes for “doin’ the wild thing” here, andSearch Engines other slang terms for sex.
3. Grandiloquent Dictionary: Impress your friends by using huge words you found here.
These sites offer different ways to search for different topics.
4. Gimpsy: Gimspy specializes in “active sites for active people.” You can search by verb or action, by filling in the sentence “I want to…”
5. Ms. Dewey: Your off-the-wall host Ms. Dewey flirts, sings and offers silly trivia or analysis while you search.
6. Ulyssek Search Engine: You can view your results organized into categories on this site.
7. Cha Cha: This creative search engine makes you feel like you’re sending a text from your cell phone when you search.
8. FactBites: FactBites is “where results make sense” and is touted as a search engine crossed with an encyclopedia.
9. Mega-Mega Search Engine: The MOTHER of ALL search engines allows you to search 20 engines at once. For serious searches, these are the 20 best general search engines, meta-search engines and directories on the Internet
10. USA People Search: Need to find someone? Try this free people search, which not only shows names and locations, but aliases, maiden names, married names, and possible relatives, all for free. It’s easy to find someone, just enter their name and click search. You can also add city, state, age, or zip code. Or search by address or phone number.
News and Pop Culture
Discover pop culture references, a sports almanac, and more in this list.
11. Who’s Alive and Who’s Dead: Keep track of which famous musicians, performers, actors, athletes and political figures are alive and which ones are dead.
12. Sports Almanac: From the Olympics to hockey, you can find everything there is to know about sports history and players on this site.
13. AllMusic.com: Search by genre like rock, jazz, pop, world, rap or blues.
14. Oxford Music Online: This site is “the world’s premier authority on all aspects of music.”
15. Bibliomania: Over 2,000 classic texts can be found on this site, as well as reference books, study guides and links to buy books.
Internet and Computer Reference
Tech’s and non-techies may want to brush up on Internet and computer terms by searching these sites and glossaries.
16. Glossary of Internet Terms: From ADN to Meta Tag to SDSL to cgi-bin, find definitions of Internet terms here.
17. McAfee Virus Glossary: Learn about online threats and computer security by browsing this authoritative glossary.
18. WestNet IT Glossary: Search results for IT words bring up definitions, a list of related words, animations and graphics.
19. Chat Stuff: This short dictionary has translations for popular chat acronyms like AFK, BAK, and BCNU.
20. Tech Encyclopedia: Look up a specific word or click to get a random definition each day.
21. What Is? IT Dictionary: Browse categories like personal computing, call centers, cheat sheets, authentication, network hardware, compliance, Linux, storage management, Telecom, robotics and a whole lot more for tech definitions.
22. Dictionary of English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions: ESL students and curious native speakers can search this dictionary to find idioms like “part and parcel,” or “gnaw your vitals.”
23. Historical Text Archives: This site boasts nearly 687 articles and 70 books about history, especially American history.
24. Style Guides and Resources: This reference list will help you out when you need to write a paper using APA, MLA, and other special citation systems.
25. Statistical Resources on the Web: Find updated statistics on everything from agriculture to business to labor to housing to the military.
26. RefDesk: Check your facts quickly and easily at the RefDesk, which features a site of the day, thought of the day, and plenty of multi-search tools.
27. Factmonster Reference Desk: Here, you’ll find an almanac, homework center, atlas, dictionary and encyclopedia for younger students.
26. Encyclopedia Mythica: Search for text, quotes and history of mythology, folklore and religon. Categories include Greek people, Celtic mythology and Roman mythology.
27. American Memory: The Library of Congress’ American culture and history reference site features topics like environment and conservation, immigration, women’s history, Presidents, religion, maps, literature, African American history and others.
28. ASL Browser: Look up American Sign Language signs here.
29. Biology Website References for Students and Teachers: Learn about evolution, cell chemistry, anatomy and genetics from this list of reference sites.
30. Math Glossary: Look up words and concepts like abacus, Thales’ theorem, obtuse triangle and a lot more in this special site.
Dictionaries and More
For a quick definition or more specialized results that display synonyms, rhyming words and slang, try one of these.
31. Strange and Unusual References: Head to this site to look up all-vowel words, magic words, magic archetypes, how to identify unicorns and other odd material.
32. Freedict.com: This online translator can find words in Dutch, Afrikaans, Russian, Portugese, Swedish, Japanese, Hungarian and more.
33. Word Spy: Search for a specific word to bring up funny quotations and a definition, or you can browse categories and sub categories like aging and death, hacking and hackers, entrepreneurs, jargon and buzzwords, art and design, drugs, euphemisms, sleeping or cell phones.
34. RhymeZone: Type in a word to find rhyming words, synonyms, definitions, Shakespeare references and more.
35. The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: Search through topics like technology, American history, literature in English, proverbs and more to become a more “active citizen in our multicultural democracy.”
36. OneLook: This no-frills online dictionary lets you look up basic definitions, related words, phrases and more. You can even customize your experience with different searches.
37. Directory of Occupational Titles: If you’ve ever wanted to know the official name of your job, look it up here.
38. Slang Site: Look up Web words, slang and even made up but often used words here.
39. Kelly Blue Book: Here you’ll find all kinds of consumer information about new and used cars.
40. Rip Off Reports: Victim of a consumer Rip-off? Want justice? Unlike the Better Business Bureau, Ripoff Report does not hide reports of “satisfied” complaints. Search the Ripoff Report before you do business with retail stores with bad return policies, checking & credit theft, rebate fraud or other unscrupulous business policies such as phony auto repairs, auto dealer bait-and-switch tactics, restaurants with bad service or food, corrupt government employees & politicians, police corruption, home builders, contractors, unethical doctors & lawyers, online stores that sell non-existent products, dead beat dads & moms, landlords & tenants, fraudulent employment & business opportunities, and individual con artists who scam consumers.