Sometimes you just need a simple website for a specific task. No signup, no download or payment, just a useful website so you can get on with your workday. In this video, Scott Friesen shows you 7 awesome websites that you probably didn't know existed!
Doesn't it feel great when you find a website that does that one thing really, really well and it does it fast and it does it absolutely for free? Well, in today's video, I'm going to share with you seven extremely useful websites that you may have never heard before but I can guarantee you're going to come back again and again because they're just so useful. Hello, everyone, Scott Friesen here at Simpletivity, helping you to get more done and enjoy less stress. And let's start off with website number one, and it is called Have I Been Pwned? Have I Been Pwned? My first question for you is how do you pronounce this word? There's a big debate online, whether it's pohnd or pawnd, or do we just say owned because it's based off of someone making a mistake and actually misspelling the word owned. No matter how you pronounce this word, this is a fantastic website to check your email or phone number to see if it's been involved in a data breach. Now, of course, you've heard of many important and significant data breaches over the years. Maybe your banking information has been attacked. Maybe other big services, such as Facebook and other social media accounts has been hacked. Maybe you've received warnings in the past. Well, you can do your own checks based on your own information. So what I'm going to do here is I'm going to type in an email address that I use for testing purposes. And I'm going to hit pwned/pwned, you tell me in the comments, and it's going to tell me that, "Oh no, there's been some data breaches." In fact, there's been 11 data breaches. Now, if I scroll down, the great thing about this website is that it's going to tell me the details of these particular data breaches for my specific email address or whatever you enter in here. So I can see things like Adobe and Canva, for example. If I scroll down further, Dropbox, Last.fm, they'll even give me the years in which many of these data breaches occurred, and they're telling me that, yeah... Look at this, email addresses, passwords, usernames, website activity, all of these things were compromised in these data breaches. So what do you do next? Well, maybe I'm going to log into some of these accounts and change my email address. That would be one thing. Number two, I should probably go in there for sure and change my password. Even if I want to keep the username or the email address, log into some of these services and change their passwords as well. The next useful website on our list is called Print Friendly, And you'll find that at printfriendly.com. Now, how often have you been looking at an article or a webpage and saying, "This is valuable information. Maybe I'd like to save this as a PDF, or maybe I need to actually print out a paper copy." So you come up to your browser and you select Print. Now, sometimes this can take a little while because it needs to load all of the ads and the images, and other things that are going on in this article. And even before I saw the preview, I'm looking up here, 11 sheets of paper. Even if this is going to be a PDF, that's I think way too long for this article. Look at all of this menu and website gunk I've got at the top of the screen. And as I scroll down, look at all these advertisement breaks in between. Here's another Black Friday ad in the middle. I've got these advertisements spaces. Yeah, this is not very easy to read in this particular format. Well, that's where Print Friendly comes into play. Let me just copy the URL of that exact same article. I'm going to come over here and paste it and say Preview. Now it may take just a few seconds, but here you can see a much more readable file. So here we got the entire document, and we're done, that's about it. That that looks more like two, maybe three pages at most. I've just got the goods of this particular article. Now, Print Friendly is perhaps even more friendly if you install the browser extension, then you don't have to be coming back to this website. And the good news is that Print Friendly is available on all major browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and Safari. So if you want to print just the goods, be sure to check out printfriendly.com. Now the third website on our list may be a little controversial, but I'll let you decide if you want to go forward and use it or not. The website that we're talking about is called 12ft.io. And here's the tagline, "Show me a 10ft paywall and I'll show you a 12ft ladder." So here's the idea, you come across an article and maybe it's from a magazine such as Harvard Business Review, maybe it's a news publication such as the Boston Globe or really anything which is requiring a subscription. So here I've found an article. I've been searching online and this looks like a great article, really what I'm interested in or what I need to know. But as I scroll down, I've only been given about a paragraph, and then it's telling me that I'm out of free articles for this month. And this is going to change depending on the website that you're on, right? Some may give you a few free articles per month or per day or whatever the case may be. Now, I want to be very clear. If you're getting real value from any publication or any website, I think you should be paying for those services. That's how you're getting quality content and quality information. However, you might stumble across a website where there's just that one article, right? Just that one piece of content. You may not be interested in any of the other content that this website is providing, but you would just like to see what's going on here. Well, this is perhaps where 12ft Ladder comes into play. What I'm going to do is I'm going to copy this URL and I'm going to come back to 12ft Ladder. Now, you actually don't even need to come to the website itself, all you need to do is actually put this little URL in front, the 12ft.io URL in front of it, but I'm going to paste it in here just for our example here. And I'm going to say Remove the Paywall. And what it's going to do, it's going to stay on that same tab, but now as I scroll down, I have no restrictions. I've got the entire article here in front of me. And the nice thing is that usually, it will remove everything else, including the ads. So why is this working and how does this particular website get around this? Well, if we scroll down to the bottom of the 12ft.io page, you can get the, what, why, and the how does it work? Essentially, the developer of this website says that he thinks that AdWords has killed the web, and so that we're too often being served up with things with keywords and things just to grab our pieces of information. But how is it working behind the scenes? Well, Google is indexing all of their content. So new sites and other publications are giving Google the entire article so it can scan through it and do its Google crawler business. However, this website is making you somehow, I guess, of the crawler or access to that same information so that they can cache a copy of the site each and every time. Now the next website on our list is very interesting and also comes with a very peculiar name. Here we are at thispersondoesnotexist.com, and yes, you read that right, the person we're looking at right now does not exist. What we're looking at is a headshot or an image made up of many other faces. So this is not a real human being. This is someone that a computer has put together from a variety of other random images. Let me just hit refresh. Here you can see someone with some type of hat on top. It's a very interesting website, and the way that you might find it useful is if you're looking for some headshots for your website, if you're looking for something for your demos or maybe a database, especially if you're giving examples to your clients or customers. I know for myself, I'm often needing a few headshots if I'm putting together a database or wanting to put something together where it looks like I've got some actual avatars or actual profile pictures here. And it's almost eerie on this page because this person, and everyone that we've seen so far, does not actually exist. These eyes are probably from someone different than the nose, than the mouth, than the hair, the ears and the chin profile. Let me refresh this once again, and again, someone else who does not exist. Now, you're probably already recognizing that it's not the most diverse collection here. There tends to be a lot more women in this particular collection and a lot more fair-skinned women as well. So if you are looking for greater diversity, this may not be the website for you, but even just for a few moments of entertainment to refresh this screen and to look at an image that looks so lifelike, that looks so real, yet this person does not exist. Something that may be helpful to you if you're looking for images and not just want to repeat all of the stock images and all those things that you see time and time again, you can go have some fun or use it for your own purposes at thispersondoesnotexist.com. Now, speaking of things that no longer exist, here we are at archive.org, and we are going to take a look at the Wayback Machine. How often have you wanted to go back and see what your website or maybe a competitor's website, or maybe just want to have some fun and take a look at a website, what did it look like many years ago? Well, what the Internet Archive does is actually cache most webpages or at least a large variety of webpages over the years. It's like taking a snapshot of different websites over the years. So let me give you just a quick example. I'm going to actually get to type in my own website because I'm in the process of redesigning my website. Maybe I'd like to go back and see, well, how did things get started? Was there things that were working better in the past or not? Let's go back and take a quick look. So here you can see, we've got a bit of a timeline here at the top. And yes, my website was actually launched in 2015, but it looks like the Wayback Machine didn't start archiving them until 2016. So these little bars represent the different points in time where things were snapshotted, where things were grabbed over time. And so if I click on 2016, for example, down below, then I'm given a yearly calendar and I can see the different months to see what did things look like at that time. So let's take a look at, I don't know, November 27th, 2016. If I go here and click on the time, that's going to be the specific time when they took that snapshot. What it's going to do is actually going to bring and present that website to me here within the browser. And things look quite a bit different than they do now on my home screen. Now, keep in mind that some of the fonts, some of the layout may be a little bit different. So, for example, this Simpletivity link is actually a logo that was over here. It didn't actually look quite like that. There might be a few things out of alignment, but I can actually go back and I don't have to save a copy of this or necessarily back up the website if I want to come back and review it. I can come here and say, "Oh, wow, so this is what I did. This is what things look like way back when. Was there anything that I want to come back and revisit?" Now, the next website on our list is for all of us who don't have the time or effort to read all of those terms of service. And you know what I'm talking about. Regardless of the software or the website or the apps that you use, you're often presented with an extremely long terms of service that even if you did read it all, would you be able to understand all of the terms and the legalities which is being used within those terms of service? Well, here at ToS;DR, that's termsofservicedidntread.org, you will get not only a summary of the terms of service, but it's actually going to tell you what it means. So, for example, if we go here to Facebook, it's telling me that Facebook stores your data whether you have an account or not. Your identity is used in ads that are shown to other users. Now this is the plain speech that we understand. But if I hover over it, it's actually going to give you the specific wording, showing you or referencing to you the actual terms of service. On the front page here, you're going to see some of the bigger names like Amazon and Reddit and Wikipedia, for example, but you can search for anything here. So, for example, if you want to type in one of your favorite tools or one of your favorite services. Let's type in something like, oh, I don't know, maybe something like Todoist, for example. And here we can see Todoist doesn't have a grade yet. Many of them will receive an actual grade, but here are some of the things that you may want to consider if you want to go forward with using that tool and if there's anything that maybe stands out to you. So, if you want to go and preview or read some of the things that you couldn't have read in the first place, or let's be honest, you didn't read in the first place, you can always come to Terms of Service; Didn't Read and catch up and determine if you want to proceed or maybe hang back. Last but certainly not least, we are on a website that's going to help you save money and make you feel confident if you are getting a great price on a particular item. Here we are at camelcamelcamel.com, and CamelCamelCamel is all about looking at Amazon products and seeing the price history of those particular products. Now you can use CamelCamel in a variety of different countries. So even if you're not using the American Amazon site, you can look at a variety of countries down here, including a German flag with a blue on the top. I don't know why they chose that there, but, anyhow, let's stick here with CamelCamelCamel and we're going to type in something here like, oh, maybe something like a Blue Yeti microphone, for example. I get a lot of questions about, "Scott, what type of microphone are you using?" And yes, I do use a Blue Yeti microphone. So if I scroll down here, here you can see there's a few different models and things that are going on here. And let's click on this first one here. It's telling me the Amazon price currently is 129.99. But if I click on the item itself, we're going to get so much more detail. So how am I going to determine if this is a good price or not? Well, if I scroll down, I can see a full price history all the way back to 2014. And you know, like most products, there's ups and downs, right? There's sales, there's Black Friday, there's a variety of other things here as well. So there's quite a gap between when it was cheapest at a mere $85, but that was also several years ago, to its highest price of 131. So, really, if I look at this, the average price has been $116. Maybe right now is not the time to buy this particular item. In fact, it's very close to the highest price it has ever been. Let's try another product for our example. Maybe I'm looking for an RGB keyboard, in this case. I'm just going to type in those keywords. It doesn't have to be a specific product. You can actually do much of your shopping right here at CamelCamelCamel. And let's take a look at this Razer gaming keyboard, which says it's 34.99. Well, is that a good price? Should I pull the trigger and purchase this today? Well, let's open it up and see what the data has to say. So, once again, I'm going to scroll down. And even before I do, it tells me, "Hey, this is the best price." Well, show me the data. Why is this the best price? Well, look at this chart. Things have seemed to continually come down over the years and I can see that, yeah, this is rock bottom. This is the lowest this particular keyboard has ever been listed on Amazon. So the average price has been 48.91, the current price is 34.99. Yeah, let's go ahead and buy this keyboard. Now, if there's a particular item that you're waiting for, the other nice thing about CamelCamelCamel is that you can track those prices. So if you just enter in your email address and say, "Listen, I want to be notified when it drops to a certain amount," you can do so right here. Now I would love to hear from you next. Which of these seven websites were your favorite? And do you have anything else that you would love to share and add to this list? Please be sure to do so in the comments down below. Remember, being productive does not need to be difficult; in fact, it's very simple.
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