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A few years ago, when a group of people wanted to decide who will do the job no one wants to, it was as simple as writing names on a piece of paper, mixing them in a bowl and picking one. Today, a phone or a computer is always with you, but a pen and paper is difficult to find. The good news is that as long as you have Internet access, you can still settle arguments and make decisions.

In fact, if anything, technology has made it easier to make decisions. It has bridged geographical divides in doing the same old pen-and-paper tricks. For example, a few friends and I wanted to randomize a list of our names to determine turns for a game we were playing. We’re scattered across three continents, so using an online app made it simple.

As for decisions and arguments, as much as the Internet fuels it and is saturated with it The Internet Is Opinion Saturated And Why I Am Quitting The Debates [Opinion] The Internet Is Opinion Saturated And Why I Am Quitting The Debates [Opinion] The Internet is an interesting creature. I know I'm dating myself here, but sometimes I'm thankful that I had the opportunity during my life to personally experience the birth and growth of the Internet. Then,... Read More , the advent of social networking and the Internet’s large database of knowledge makes anything easy to settle.

How to Flip a Coin Online

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Some arguments can be settled with a simple toss, whether it’s before a sporting match-up or to make a quick choice about whether you want to order Chinese or pizza for takeaway. When you want to do that, just flip a coin.

Why We Like Just Flip a Coin

  • Works perfectly on mobile and desktop
  • Easy name to remember
  • Randomized enough to give different results

Another worthy contender: Random.org/Coins

  • Flip multiple coins simultaneously
  • Choose different currencies
  • Get official timestamp under your coin to prove validity
  • Attested by independent third-party assessors to be truly random
  • Easy to remember the site address

How to Arrange a List in Random Order

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Like the case of my friends above, you might have a list in your hand that needs to be sorted into a random order. Well, Random.org can help again.

It should be noted that this site is perhaps the most accurate randomizer around. The FAQs explain that true randomization is theoretically impossible for a computer, but third-party analysts like Gaming Labs International reckon its algorithms are good enough to “distribute numbers with sufficient non-predictability, fair distribution and lack of bias to particular outcomes.”

Why We Like Random.org/Lists

  • Works perfectly on mobile and desktop
  • Easy to use
  • Advanced options for web or text output
  • Personalized randomizations

How to Pick a Random Name from a List

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No one in office wants to be the one to go get coffee for everyone? Let the magic of the Internet help you out, kids. Head to a wondrous portal called Pick At Random. In the given field, type a name, hit Enter, and keep doing that till everyone’s names are listed. Finally, click the Thrill Me button to find out whose turn it is to get their butt out of the comfortable office chair.

Why We Like Pick At Random

  • Works perfectly on mobile and desktop
  • Easy name to remember
  • Can remove list items easily
  • Multiple clicks for different results

How to Make and Share a Quick Poll Online

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When you want to make a group decision, the easiest way is to poll everyone. But you don’t want to go through the hassle of signing up for a new polling service, then figuring out the interface, then add your Twitter and Facebook and Google contacts into the poll’s address book. It’s messy, it’s time-consuming, it’s not easy. The simple solution is Polls.io.

It’s a free and no-signup web app 10 Common Web Tasks You Can Do Without Signing Up 10 Common Web Tasks You Can Do Without Signing Up Security bugs like Heartbleed make it clear that your logins and passwords are not safe. But what if you could use the Web for common tasks without signing up for an account? Read More . Go to the site, write your question, and just start listing options. You have an unlimited number of entries. Once you’re done, create a poll and share the URL link with whoever you want, wherever you want. It just works. Simple. Easy.

Why We Like Polls.io

  • Works perfectly on mobile and desktop
  • Easy name to remember
  • No sign-up or logins required
  • Participants can comment on the poll if they desire

How to Answer Yes / No or Two-Choice Questions

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Social networks are an awesome way to make a quick decision for binary questions. If all you want is a yes/no answer or need help choosing between the red pill or the blue pill, post the question on your preferred social network and use the built-in tools as voting mechanism.

Let’s take Twitter for example, which you should be using anyway Why Everyone Needs Twitter in Their Lives Why Everyone Needs Twitter in Their Lives What can you get in a mere 140 characters that changes your life or has a deep, meaningful impact? Turns out, you can get a lot. Read More . You could ask a question like:

neo

It’s a common practice on Twitter and you will get a poll result soon. Similarly, on Facebook, you could choose “Like for Blue Pill, Share for Red Pill” as your parameters. The counter on both will give you an indication quickly.

How to Settle Factual Arguments

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You’ve had a few drinks, you’re talking music with your buddies, and someone asks, who was the “Fifth Beatle”? Let’s not break bottles arguing about whether it’s Pete Best or George Martin, just do a quick Google search or look it up on Wikipedia.

In fact, the Google Knowledge Graph An In-Depth Look At Google's New Knowledge Graph An In-Depth Look At Google's New Knowledge Graph Read More is a good way to find such information quickly. But remember, you can’t always rely on it being factual Dinosaurs? Google Gives an Answer from Creationism, Not Science. Here's Why... Dinosaurs? Google Gives an Answer from Creationism, Not Science. Here's Why... Google is apparently a creationist organization – one that thinks dinosaurs are used to indoctrinate children into believing that earth is millions of years old. Read More .

If it’s hard numbers you are looking for, like the current population of the earth or the length of the Great Wall of China, then Wolfram Alpha is your most reliable option. Just to be more specific, use specific search terms for better accuracy 10 Search Terms To Put Wolfram Alpha To Good Use Everyday 10 Search Terms To Put Wolfram Alpha To Good Use Everyday Read More .

Has the Internet Helped You with Big Arguments?

Look, being on the Internet will usually lead to a flame war Worse Than Hitler: Why Do Flamewars Happen? Worse Than Hitler: Why Do Flamewars Happen? Why are flamewars so common on today's web, and is it really a new phenomenon?  Read More about something you care about. But it can also lead to lively discussions and intellectually stimulating arguments. So tell us an incident where the Internet helped you settle a debate, or become part of an exciting one.

Image Credits: Zygotehaasnobrain / Shutterstock.com, Reddit

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