RILEY: What sites have you stumbled upon?

Rachel Riley

Twitter and Facebook for the socialites, Tumblr for the artsy type, Sporcle for the trivia lovers, Youtube for the future filmakers—there’s a place for everyone on the World Wide Web. Unfortunately, being the internet addict that I am, I find myself bored after a few hours of scrolling through my newsfeed on Facebook or catching up on my Twitter feed. That’s when I head for www.stumbleupon.com . If you haven’t yet visited, Stumble Upon is a site for the adventurous, a sort of sport for internet connoisseurs. First time users can easily register or use Facebook to log in. Once a member, users choose from a long list of topics to describe their interests, adding an element of Pandora-Radio-esque personalization. These topics range from Art History to Paranormal, Travel to Self Improvement. After a quick personal inventory, the fun begins. By clicking the Stumble Upon logo, users are directed to random web pages according to their choices. The toolbar at the top of your internet browser allows you to like or dislike sites or share them via Facebook and Twitter. The brilliance of Stumble Upon lies in the pages it takes users to. Browse the photo galleries of National Geographic. Pick a few stories to read from an online library of ghost stories. Take a look at the “19 Best Angry Windshield Notes.” Get inspired by an index of motivational quotes or Post Secret. Fill yourself with the most useless information, from pop culture trivia like “Ten Things You Didn’t Know About Star Wars” to psychology articles like “The Fifteen Styles of Distorted Thinking.” I cannot tell you where exactly Stumble Upon will take you, but I can guarantee hours of entertainment. New features on the site also allow users to Stumble specific topics, such as cute animal pictures or recipes. Ok, so maybe sleepy puppies are resistible to some, but Nutella cupcakes and red velvet brownie cheesecake simply cannot be ignored. Users may also connect with other Facebook friends who are members, enabling them to see the favorites and recent activity of others. The free Stumble Upon app for smart phones has even made Stumbling possible from virtually any location. Yes. Stumbling. My faith in Stumble Upon is so great that it will soon join Google, Twitter, and Facebook in the elite group of internet terms that have become verbs. Personally, I have few grievances with the site aside from the immense procrastination it triggers. As Stumble’s logo implies, “Discover the best of the web.” Why limit yourself to a select few sites when the Web has so much more to offer? I learned one night while Stumbling that Saint Augustine once said, “The world is a book. Those who do not travel read only a page.” I am confident that if Augustine lived in the Twenty-First Century, his words of wisdom would be a little different. The internet is a book. Those who do not Stumble read only a page.