A list of websites which have "changed our lives" through unprecedented access to advice on everything from moving house and parenting to making new friends has been compiled by Which?
But although it covers sites dealing with lifestyle and family finance, the list excludes some of the internet’s most useful and popular sources, including news webpages and online retailers such as Amazon.
Abigail Waraker, the editor of Computing Which?, said the list was not meant to be an exhaustive guide to all the sites on the net, but a useful guide for the casual user.
"Our team has picked 101 websites we think have the potential to change your life," she said. "We’ve tried to pick those we know are reputable. It isn’t an exhaustive list and new web pages appear all the time."
The list shows there are now online sites to deal with just about every experience between birth and death, as well as recommending sites to visit for lifestyle tips and networking. Experts from Which? scoured the net to find the best places for everything, from divorced fathers who want to see their children, to homeowners checking out property prices, to how to change careers.
The list includes sites which tell people how they can get in touch with their MP, plan retirement, look up their family tree, improve their education, get legal advice – or simply find out how stuff works.
It also includes familiar favourites such as YouTube, Wikipedia, eBay and Dateline, and Which? includes seven of its own consumer sites in the list.
Mike Channell, a writer for PC Format magazine, said the Which? list could not hope to be a definitive guide to web content, but would help people who were looking for sources of practical advice.
He added: "The internet has absolutely revolutionised the way people communicate, and there is a vast amount of content. Increasingly, it is the first port of call for people looking for information."
Ms Waraker added: "For millions worldwide, the internet has become an essential part of our daily lives, but can a website really change your life?
"We’ve been amazed at the number of potentially life-changing websites out there. You can publish a book online, sign up for VSO (Voluntary Services Overseas) or list your own life changing goals. It has been a real challenge whittling the list down to 101. We hope they are inspirational – they may even change your life."
The sites include several devoted to "Births, Deaths and Marriages", such as the self-explanatory Babycentre, Divorce Aid, Netmums.com and even soyouvebeendumped.com.
Health-related information sites include Dr Foster, NHS Direct and Patient Opinion – where patients can complain or compliment medical staff.
Property and homeselling sites include The Land Registry, where prices are listed, and Rightmove.co.uk, which offers a range of prices from estate agents nationwide.
The Which? list also includes several sites on the environment and green issues, such as Recyclenow, to changing career with online advice such as Homeworking.com.
And for those seeking advice on relaxation, there are sites which will help you find a yoga teacher or a t’ai chi class and one which shows how to find lists of complementary therapists listed by the NHS.
Via the Scotsman