16 Inspiring Websites to Enjoy this Summer

Image Credit: Gimundo

The Internet is full of beautiful thoughts, ideas, and inspiration. These are the websites working to make sure we don’t miss any of it.

Hop off Facebook and consider gleaning a little bit of internet wisdom from some of these interesting and inspiring sites, dedicated to imparting just a little bit more thought, knowledge and general happiness onto us all. Whether over your morning coffee, under a beach umbrella, or at the end of a long work day, these sites will help wake up your brain.

But Does It Float

This endlessly scrolling art site’s been around for a few years, but it’s still going strong as a way to let your mind melt for a while. But Does It Float is mindful enough to get out of the way, with short descriptions (“In one way or another, we’re all anchored to the book”) preceding works that often stretch beyond the length of the screen. Whether you’re an appreciator or skeptic, scroll and let the art take over.

BrainyQuote

Looking for the perfect line for a festive occasion, or seeking a clever quote to share with friends? BrainyQuote is home to thousands, organized by author, category, and more. Don’t miss the wonderful bon mots from the brilliant Mark Twain.

Cowbird

Cowbird is dedicated to representing the human experience, with collaborative tools for sharing personal stories, photos, and videos, which are tagged by theme and place. Start your own multimedia diary here, or take a step into others’ journeys on the site.

DailyGood

This free daily newsletter shares a short excerpt from an inspiring true good news story each day, with links to the full articles around the web. Don’t miss their recent publication asking Can Compassion Change the World?

GOOD

GOOD shines a spotlight on innovative projects, companies, and people that are changing the world. See: Human Clown Posse - In Israel laughter and medicine work together

Greatist

Greatist is focused around the notion of helping its readers lead a fitter, healthier—and, as a result, happier—lifestyle. The site features simple recipes, workout tips, and simple lifestyle adaptations to help you improve your mood, energy, and happiness. Don’t miss: A video that shows The Unexpected Source of Happiness

Kickstarter

One of the biggest platforms for online crowdfunding, Kickstarter allows us to learn about and lend financial support to innovative and inspiring artistic and business-focused projects. Click around the site to learn about and help support compelling, and sometimes quirky, efforts, such as Jewelbots: Friendship Bracelets That Teach Girls To Code

Medium

On its face, Medium is just another blogging platform. But its minimalist layout and dead-simple writing tools have quickly turned it into the de facto standard for smart writers who want to say something and don’t have a home for it. And for those who are publishing elsewhere, Medium’s no-clutter interface is still a great place to draft your next story. Read #WeAreHere Middle School Voices, a collection of award winning pieces from Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.

Marc & Angel HACK LIFE

Sharing a passion for living their best lives, Marc and Angel Chernoff have built a career out of inspiring others. Their blog contains over 700 articles on happiness, productivity, emotional intelligence, relationships, and general self-improvement. One of their most recent posts looks at 5 Things You Should Be Able to Smile About in 5 Years.

Narratively

At a time when the percentage of articles longer than 2,000 words in national newspapers has plummeted, Narratively sets a different theme each week and publishes one in-depth local story a day around that idea. Its strategy is designed to “slow down the news cycle” and focus on stories about people you don’t hear about every day — from the Father of the Emoticon to The Secret Life of a Rock and Roll Trucker, Narratively takes a deep dive into some of the internet’s most unexpectedly fascinating topics.

StoryCorps

NPR’s StoryCorps features audio recordings of ordinary Americans’ true stories, which are certain to make you laugh, cry, and take a closer look at your own life. This touching piece from Father’s Day weekend discovers the beautiful relationship between a 9 year old science prodigy and her Haitian immigrant dad.

TED

“Ideas worth spreading” are the guts of this non profit, and the ideas usually come in short form, 18 minute presentations. People from every discipline and culture give talks on any idea you can imagine, often inspiring action and application. How to Speak So People Want to Listen and The Puzzle of Motivation are only a few of the most viewed TedTalks of all time.

The Future of Food

In 2014 National Geographic tackled a very, very big issue. Food. This eight week special series is full of fascinating articles about farming and fishing, the joys of eating, communal tables around the world, and feeding a growing global population. And, in classic National Geographic style, the images are beautiful. Enjoy this glimpse into the communal table traditions of the people of Milpa Alta, Mexico.

The Kid Should See This

The internet is full of amazing stuff, and while not all of the cool “science, nature, music, art, technology, storytelling and assorted good stuff” is created specifically for kids, that doesn’t mean they won’t love learning it. As founder Rion Nakaya says, “We don’t underestimate kids around here.” So, adults and kids alike are invited to enjoy the rad assortment of interesting stuff at TKSST. Like, for example, this awesome video of Norwegian orcas eating herring.

1000 Awesome Things

This rabbit hole of awesome items, moments, feelings, people and just generally wonderful things may take months to get through, but it’s a great way to remember the little moments that make up a pretty great life. Everything from gutsy city animals (#103) to high fiving babies (#886 ), to giant morning stretches accompanied by stupid noises (#535), to learning a new keyboard shortcut (#572) are compiled into this insightful glimpse into everyday awesome things.

Wonderville

Yet another awesome site dedicated to kid science, with award winning games, activities and videos that spur imagination and ignites young minds. If you happen to have kids around and want to keep their brains activated on rainy days this summer, here’s a great tool. Check out this great biodiversity game.

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