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While developers are definitely preferring to make apps for mobile platforms like iOS and Android, the Web isn’t going anywhere for a while, so you will still have some cool Internet services and apps being made. And while you might think 2013 didn’t see much innovation on the web, you’d be surprised at what developers were up to when you really look back at the year that has nearly gone by.

In no particular order, here are the best web apps and services that were launched in 2013:

Postach.io

Postachio

While it’s not difficult to launch your own blog with WordPress or other tools, Postach.io went a different way: it lets you turn your Evernote into a blogging platform Turn Evernote Into A Blogging Platform With Postach.io Turn Evernote Into A Blogging Platform With Postach.io There is certainly no shortage of blogging platforms available to users for free. WordPress and Tumblr alone are a great way to keep a blog, but there are a few creative alternatives out there. A... Read More ! And it’s a pretty robust tool too, letting you embed YouTube videos and tweets, Instagram media, and lots more. Plus, it looks really cool and you get free hosting, aided by knowing that your data is all yours on Evernote.

Digg Reader

Digg-reader

With Google Reader being shut down in 2013, there were a lot of other RSS readers that popped up to replace it. And perhaps the best alternative came from Digg with its new Digg Reader Digg Reader Is A Beautifully Minimal Alternative To Feedly Digg Reader Is A Beautifully Minimal Alternative To Feedly Digg launched a reader in June following the shutdown of Google Reader. Digg Reader is a slick, minimal reader that puts the focus where it should be -- on the articles you want to read. Read More . It’s a beautiful and minimal app that’s perfect for consuming content, especially aided by discovering new items to read through Digg’s homepage.

Nextly

Nextly

Nextly wants you to forget RSS Forget RSS. Nextly Is The New Way To Consume Online Content Forget RSS. Nextly Is The New Way To Consume Online Content With the demise of Google Reader, we've been on a constant mission of trying to find a better way to consume content online. There have been a few options that are something of an anti-RSS... Read More and look at consuming news online the way you do it on TV. Hook it up to Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and a bunch of major news outlets, and Nextly will grab headlines from there and present it in a TV channel-like experience in your browser. You can switch between sources, topics or quickly skip articles. It’s for those who need an RSS reader for news but also want a mix of their social networks in there.

Canva

Canva

If design and aesthetics aren’t your thing, then you need Canva. With this simple tool, you can make beautiful designs easily Making Beautiful Designs The Easy Way With Canva [Signup & Free Credit] Making Beautiful Designs The Easy Way With Canva [Signup & Free Credit] What if an application promised to make it possible for anyone to create aesthetically pleasing designs? What if creating a genuinely beautiful design was just a matter of dragging and dropping? Read More , without needing much skills. Choose from the wide array of layouts, text labels, backgrounds, and other templates, put it all together, and there you go! It’s just easy.

Pop-up Archive

PopUpArchive

Pop Up Archive is a new tool to help journalists, media, archivists, historians, and others easily find and reuse sound. Once you make an audio recording, upload it to Pop Up Archive, which automatically transcribes it and issues timestamps, making it easy to search for the recordings. The sounds are indexed so they can be recovered by keyword, date, contributor, location, and more. Plus, it has plenty of great audio already Pop Up Archive Transcribes and Tags Sounds, Searches Historical Broadcasts Pop Up Archive Transcribes and Tags Sounds, Searches Historical Broadcasts Initially started as a project at University of California, Berkeley, Pop Up Archive is a new tool to help journalists, media, archivists, historians and others easily find and reuse sound. Read More on the site from Public Radio Exchange (PRX) which you can browse.

Smithsonian X 3D

Smithsonian-X-3D

The Smithsonian X 3D is an ambitious project by the Smithsonian Institute to create accurate 3D scans of artifacts, so that you can check them out in great detail from the comfort of your couch. You’ll get to see Amelia Earhart’s flight suit The Smithsonian's X 3D Project Brings Rare Artifacts To Life, In Your Browser The Smithsonian's X 3D Project Brings Rare Artifacts To Life, In Your Browser Enter the Smithsonian with an ambitious project that showcases incredibly accurate 3D scans of many of its artifacts, so that we can all experience them for free from the comfort of our homes. Read More , a blue crab, and even a supernova. And don’t miss out on the guided tours!

TorSearch

Torsearch

The Tor network, which maintains the anonymity of its pages by routing traffic through open connections, cannot be accessed by regular search engines like Google and Bing. Tor Search wants to make it easier for average users to search this “Deep Web” TorSearch Aims To Be The Google For The Deep Web TorSearch Aims To Be The Google For The Deep Web Tor is a hidden service and part of the Deep Web. TorSearch is a new anonymous search engine that its founder Chris MacNaughton wants to make the “Google of Tor”. Read More , indexing over 130,000 links so far.

Phraseum

Phraseum

Phraseum is a simple but handy browser tool that turns your day-to-day browsing into a language learning class Clip, Save, And Tag Your Way To A New Language With Phraseum Clip, Save, And Tag Your Way To A New Language With Phraseum Phraseum is a simple but handy browser tool that turns your day-to-day browsing into a language learning class. Read More . You can clip and save phrases you come across while browsing; tag them with the right keywords to make it easy to look them up later; and slowly and steadily, you’ll build up a database of phrases to learn from. It’s pretty cool!

Culturalist

Culturalist

If you keep clicking those list-based articles on Buzzfeed and, well, like this one, then you know that lists are a great way to arrange useful information. Culturalist wants to take this one step further, encouraging you to make lists about particular subjects, and inviting others to add their lists to the same topic. It’s a list-based social network Love Making Lists? Culturalist Is Going To Be Your New Best Friend [Beta Invites Inside] Love Making Lists? Culturalist Is Going To Be Your New Best Friend [Beta Invites Inside] Culturalist is a new website that's about lists, and it's also social. Make your own top 10 lists about anything, share them, and explore lists by others to join in on the fun? Read More , essentially.

iversity

iVersity

The newest contender in the space of online educational courses is iversity, marked as the Coursera of Europe The Coursera Of Europe: iversity Opens With 24 Free Courses And 100K Students The Coursera Of Europe: iversity Opens With 24 Free Courses And 100K Students Berlin based iversity.org has planted its footprint in the ever-expanding MOOC (Massively Open Online Course) universe. It starts with a fresh bouquet of free courses and a strong student base of 115,000. Read More . It has 24 free courses to begin with and 100,000 students. It covers a wide range of topics from philosophy to physics, architecture to economics, and politics to engineering.

Sketchfab

SketchFab

Sketchfab lets anyone upload 3D models (like those created in Blender) and embed them in beautifully rendered form anywhere on the Web: no plug-ins, just HTML5 The Future Is Here: Sketchfab Puts 3D Models Right In Your Browser The Future Is Here: Sketchfab Puts 3D Models Right In Your Browser Sketchfab is a beautiful repository of inspiring 3D designs. You can upload 3D models and embed them anywhere on the Web. No plug-ins are required to view your embedded models: Just HTML5. Read More . It’s an easy interface (you can rotate, zoom, and pan with the mouse) and get a true sense of what you are looking at.

NextStories

NextStories

To put it bluntly, NextStories is a refreshing and easy-to-use alternative to StumbleUpon NextStories: A Refreshing And Easy-to-Use StumbleUpon Alternative NextStories: A Refreshing And Easy-to-Use StumbleUpon Alternative When StumbleUpon first hit the Web 2.0 scene, it was one of the first sites of its kind to really make it easy to discover new content online. Since then, lots of websites and apps... Read More . You don’t need an account to get the bookmarklet. It works by seeing what you are currently reading and presenting a set of articles you would be interested in reading next, based on your current selection. You can submit sites, browse the app by categories and more, but it’s the basic functionality itself of hopping from site to site smartly that we find really cool.

Forecast.io

Forecastio

When you need to find out the weather, it can be a beautiful experience. At least that’s what Forecast.io wants to prove; an elegant weather app Forecast.io: The Elegant Weather App For The Globe That Shows The Merits Of Good Design Forecast.io: The Elegant Weather App For The Globe That Shows The Merits Of Good Design A weather forecast website should be designed to make gloomy weather a bit palatable. The appropriately named Forecast.io ticks most of the boxes; including the one that says – elegance. Take the first look at... Read More that gives you all the weather information you would need in a gorgeous design, capped by an animated globe that rotates to show you the latest weather developments. It’s brilliant.

Meetings.io

Meetingsio

It’s simple. When you want to set up an online video conference, you don’t want to depend on all the participants having a Google Hangouts or Skype account. So just go to Meetings.io, set up a room and send everyone an invitation. No sign-ups needed, it’s video-conferencing at its simplest Create a Stylish Personal Profile Page For Videoconferencing With Meetings.io Create a Stylish Personal Profile Page For Videoconferencing With Meetings.io I'm a fan of the online video conferencing feature Google Hangouts, not only for social gathering, but for nearly hassle-free online meetings. However, in my research for other similar services, I stumbled upon a perhaps... Read More , most convenient form.

Enthuse.me

Enthuseme

Better than creating a boring resume on LinkedIn, head to Enthuse.me and give the person who is hiring you a well-designed, streamlined look at who you are and what you do. It’s perhaps the easiest resume-builder Better Than A Resume - Enthuse.me Will Get You Excited About Looking For Work Better Than A Resume - Enthuse.me Will Get You Excited About Looking For Work Read More we have used for the social web, and definitely the best looking.

Bonus! Special Mention: Medium

Medium

Although first unveiled in 2012, Medium was opened to the public in 2013 and that’s why we consider it to be truly “born” this year. The new blogging platform Medium: An Alternative Blogging Platform From The Founders Of Twitter Medium: An Alternative Blogging Platform From The Founders Of Twitter Twitter's co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone launched their own blogging platform, Medium, about a year ago. The founders say that the aim is to "re-imagine" publishing, by allowing users to choose the level of... Read More from the founders of Twitter is easy to use, and the v1.0 update only makes it even more beautiful than before Medium 1.0 Redesigns The Reading And Writing Experience Medium 1.0 Redesigns The Reading And Writing Experience Medium just had its first major update, pushing it to version 1. Stories have been redesigned to look better and have more impact, also changing how collections work to enable curation and improve discoverability. Read More . It’s all about writing here.

Name Your Picks

Maybe, you don’t agree with this list. Maybe, you do — but your favorite website is missing. That’s what the comment space is for. Tell us all about the outstanding websites you discovered in 2013.

  1. Guest
    January 24, 2014 at 2:16 am

    Is there any particular reason why Web 2.0-style sites have odd names? (Seriously, Pistachio?)

    Also, anyone got any idea why the sudden popularity of nonstandard TLDs (like .io and .cc) with these kind of sites? I sort of get the .me and .ly concept (.me caters to the individualism of this generation, whereas for some reason English adverbs are popular as domain names, though I dunno why that is either). I also get the point of .fm and .tv (obvious use for radio and TV networks or programs). Pidgin (the multi-protocol chat program) has a clever use of the .im domain (IM being the abbreviation for instant message). But the other ones, uh... is there any point to giving your website a weird name and the TLD of some third-world country? Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious . su?*

    (BTW, .su is the TLD for the Soviet Union. Wiki states that it is still in existence more than two decades after the dissolution of the USSR primarily because of *national pride.*)

  2. Kshitij Verma
    January 16, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    Hey
    Does anyone know if Canva lets you export your designs in the format of a web page?

    Thanks

  3. Nancy B
    January 10, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    great information! I hadn't heard of most of these sites and look forward to checking some out!

  4. Chandrashekhar P
    January 8, 2014 at 5:12 am

    Great information on awesome websites and online services, which will really help all of us, Thanks Mihir!

  5. Steven T
    January 4, 2014 at 10:10 am

    Excellent mix. Nicely put together!

  6. Justin K
    December 27, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    Thanks for a great list!

  7. BB Birdy
    December 23, 2013 at 4:53 am

    So, NextStories looked interesting. I went to the site and decided to give the bookmarklet a test. I went to a site with household cleaning tip articles, and pressed the trusty bookmarklet button. Unfortunately, not only did the articles seem unrelated, several of them had very, VERY nsfw images as thumbnails. (Cue my deletion and summary disposal of the bookmarklet and any further interest in the service.)

    Also, you might want to mention that Canva is in beta, and that people can't simply jump in and start using it. They can submit a request to reserve an account, and then get put on a waiting list.

  8. Steve Higgins
    December 22, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    Nextly is awesome!

  9. Db
    December 22, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    Mihir....awesome info. Using Canva now....great tool. Would not have found it w/out your help. Your help & insight is sincerely appreciated. Speaking as a business owner...you sharing your knowledge is valuable and for that....Thank You x 1 million + infinity.

    • Mihir Patkar
      December 22, 2013 at 7:05 pm

      Glad to be of help, Db :)

  10. Scout D
    December 22, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    I'm sure that all of these websites will recieve a large boost in popularity after being featured in this article. But as we all know from Google, the larger of a corporation you become,the more corrupt you do as well. I hope they become successful, if not too much so.

  11. Jonathan
    December 21, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    digg Reader is the best tool =)

  12. kihara
    December 21, 2013 at 7:51 am

    Great information Mihir!

    • Mihir Patkar
      December 22, 2013 at 7:05 pm

      Thanks Kihara!

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