What are your favorite online reference sites?

I’m looking for examples of well designed reference sites. By reference site, I just mean a site that you go to to answer questions, as opposed to sites you go to for entertainment or to buy goods or services.

I’m particularly interested in sites that meet the following criteria

  1. contains a well organized, extensive library of articles
  2. provides online profiles for the authors of the articles.

Let’s start with one that meets neither of your desired criteria: Urban Dictionary, my favorite slang site.

Sticky thread of reference sites.

Here’s a


that links to practically everything.

  • Old Farmer’s Almanac, at least two weird-news sites, Astronomy Picture of the Day, This Day in History, Late Night Jokes, Letterman’s Top Ten…

and that’s just for openers!

AND it’s all on one



  • TBJ

Well, wikipedia and google obviously. And the various specialized wikis like Lostpedia for in depth info on specific shows and other topics. And I often use amazon to find out info about movies and books I’m curious about even if I’m not looking to buy them.

The aforementioned Urban Dictionary for slang and pop culture terms.

imdb.com, boxoffice mojo, futon critic, and rotten tomatoes, for movie and tv info.

versiontracker for software.

timeanddate.com for various date related calculators.