The Website Game


What happens when Zach is bored and wants to write something for Noise from the Basement but really has nothing to write about?  He FINDS something to write about!

The project: For as long as I’m not bored and/or sleepy, I will open up a dictionary and point to a random word.  Then I will take that word and put it in a website URL and click SEARCH!  So say I randomly point to the word “faculty.”  I would then search for and review the website that came up.  (For the record, is one of those stupid search websites.)  (I won’t write about any disappointments like “faculty.”)

So here we go, after the jump…


1. Word: Shroff

Recognized by Microsoft Word: no

Definition (as provided by The Random House College Dictionary Revised Edition from 1980):  n. 1. (in India) a banker or moneychanger.  2.  (in the far east, esp. China) a native expert employed to test coins, esp. to detect those that are counterfeit. v.t. 3.  to test the genuineness of (coins).

Last updated: January 25, 2009

General idea of site: DJ Shroff hosts a self-indulgent website dedicated to posting pictures of his travels, his wedding, telling you what books he’s reading, and, oh yeah, letting you listen to every one of his albums.

The disappointment: You can only listen to entire albums, so no selecting which track you want to hear.  I hopped about Christmas Chill 2001, it all sounds fairly generic.

The question: Who is this website for?  If it’s meant for people to come discover his music, why post directions to your wedding and then an album of countless wedding pictures?

Bonus: Clearly needs to update his “Recent reading,” since the fourth item listed is James Fray’s Million Little Pieces.  Or maybe it’s meant as ironic.

Overall: Part-blog, part-demo tape, it needs a clearer grasp on its target audience.


F - 2-5 Raheems

2. Word: ouzel

Recognized by MW: yes

Definition: n. any of several black, European thrushes, esp. Turdus torquatus, having a band of white across the chest.

Last updated: Can’t tell

General idea of site: Ouzel Expeditions plans your trip to Alaska or Kamchatka, Russia, where you’ll bird-watch or kill fish.  It’s up to you.

The disappointment: It’s fairly hard to navigate.  If you were actually interested in one of these trips, I’d imagine you’d grow very frustrated with the unorganized overflow of information.

The question: Why plan your Alaska fishing trip through a credible travel agent?  Go through Ouzel Expeditions!

Bonus: There’s something hilarious about the lineup of those three pictures on the front page (see above).

Overall: Cluttered layout (beyond the first page, which may be overly-simplistic).  And maybe it’s just that I’m not the target audience, but I find the subject matter fairly boring.


E - 2 Raheems

3. Word: diabolic

Recognized by MS Word: yes

Definition: adj. 1. having the qualities of the devil; fiendish; outrageously wicked: a diabolic plot.  2. pertaining to or actuated by the devil or a devil.

Last updated: 7/10/09

General idea of site: Wouldn’t you know it, our first porn site.  They look like some sort of porn distributor.  Aw hell, in their own words: “we make hardcore, adult entertainment.”  There you go.  Excuse me if I don’t click to enter the site.

The disappointment: I’m not finding out.

Bonus: “We all know porn is fun, but this is not for kids. is pure hardcore sex, and were proud of it.”  So many things wrong (right?) with that sentence.

Overall: Hey, this is the first time I’ve ever stumbled upon a porn site and actually been 18.  Too bad porn hasn’t held any fascination for me since I was 12.

Rating: Yeah, I’ll leave this up to you.

4. Word: bulldog

Recognized by MS Word: yes

Definition: It’s pretty long, so I’m just going to assume you know what a bulldog is.

Last updated: Can’t tell.

General idea of site: Promoting a coffeehouse in Amsterdam that sells marijuana.

The disappointment: If you’re interested in the recreational drug angle, the site is skimpy on information, although there is a section devoted to selling drug paraphernalia.

The question: Why is it so light on direct references to selling pot?  It looks like it may be having some legal problems, since it’s located within 200 meters of a school.

Bonus: In a section in its History page, it purports to be “the world’s first coffeeshop.”  “Coffeeshop” isn’t even a word, so I’m assuming they mean “coffeehouse,” in which case Wikipedia puts the first one in the year 962.

Overall: If you’re looking for a wealth of information about a pot-selling coffeehouse, none of which involves any direct references to them selling pot (that I could find), you’ll enjoy it.  And pick up some rolling paper on your way out.


G - 3 Raheems


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