Every year when The Webby Awards are announced, I promise myself that I’ll just spend a few minutes finding the highlights to share with you. The awards highlight everything from great newsletters to fun games. I search through the hundreds of winners and nominees to find great stuff for productivity, augmented reality, artificial intelligence and more things we talk about here.
There are literally hundreds of sites, but I can’t possibly go through them all, can I? I was just going to skim this time… and now 12 hours later…. I’m so excited! I scoured the lists from top to bottom.
I have to apologize because this is wayyy tooo much awesome for one blog post. But I gotta do what I gotta do.
Here are my picks for the best of The Webby Awards.
If you haven’t seen this deepfake video with Obama, you don’t understand the craziness that is coming.
Upload your picture to this site, and artificial intelligence will redraw you. I think I kinda look good in AI.
Collect by WeTransfer is a new one for me… it looks like a souped-up Evernote that lets you collect, keep and combine ideas from apps, including songs, pictures, videos, links and articles.
One of my team members likes Monday.com, so now that they’ve won a Webby, I should check out how they help with project and time management.
All the Feels
Sick kids watching a VR Smileyscope. #WhatYouNeedToday
Google’s GBoard team created a keyboard that opens up a whole world of communication for differently abled people. Watch what I’m talking about here, and check out the Google Experiments Morse code page here.
So. Yeah. If you like cats and chicken, here’s a video of kittens crawling on a cat tree decorated like Colonel Sanders. Guys, I don’t know. They actually live streamed it for four hours, and more than a million people watched. It won both the regular Webby and People’s Voice.
This site is just cats bouncing. That’s it. But it’s hard to stop watching.
No cats, but definitely weird. Here’s a site that celebrates what technology was like when Britney Spears was all that. It’s actually kinda awesome.
Wow. This National Geographic video won a couple of acknowledgements. Worth taking 7 minutes to enjoy. Be sure to use your mouse on YouTube to swipe 360 degrees.
The Google Experiments tools are my fave! Check out all these music-making tools in the Creatability Collection. This GIF is me making music with my hand. I’m hiding my face because #BadHairDay.
Well, I’m not really sure why I would need to explore 50 Years of Swiss Music Charts, but it sure is fun to do so. This site was nominated for data visualization.
Even if you’re not into birds, you’ll be fascinated with the data visualization of migration patterns.
Language and Travel
Both Google Assistant’s new interpreter mode and iTranslate’s Converse were recognized. They both let you carry on a more-or-less natural conversation with instant translation with different language speakers.
Yea! My favorite flight price-watching tool, Hopper, won!
Amazon’s Alexa devices are getting a few HIPPA-compliant connections for use in healthcare, but Lucy is ahead of the game. These voice-activated “bedside assistants” help patients in hospital rooms summon the right help at the right time just by speaking what they need, like “Lucy, tell the nurse I’m in pain.” Right now they’re only in The Prince of Wales Hospital, but this will probably catch on.
An Italian nonprofit needed donations to fight ALS, a progressive neurodegenerative disease. So they created an app that let Italians record one word that would be used to build a database of voices that A.L.S. patients could use to speak. It became the most downloaded app in Italy… and everyone had to pay a couple of bucks to get it. So now there’s a beautiful “voice” with countless voices, plus lots of money to help the cause.
A few days ago I gave you guys all kinds of tools to help with robocalls.RoboKiller was recognized for its efforts to cut down on spam calls. It’s the one that messes with telemarketers with recorded “conversations,” and then lets you listen to the chaos.
They have nothing on this security tool… even though we’ll probably never know the name of it. A group created a secret Alexa skill that helps domestic violence victims. The name of the skill is shared at women’s shelters and the like. The person enables the skill, then if there is an episode of domestic violence, telling Alexa to “play loud music” will summon help. This technique may work because domestic violence victims frequently turn up music to cover the sounds of the abuse.
And then there’s Outro, an Apple app for rating and reviewing bars and clubs based on security, comfort level, vibe, inclusivity and cleanliness.
OMG I love this app! Download it and scan a US dollar bill (or other denomination) to replace the face on the bill with a #NotableWoman. “Swapping out the faces we all know for the faces we all should.”
The Cheetos Vision app isn’t really there for your mental health, but it will totally make you smile.
Not even an artificial intelligence Cheetos filter can disguise the #badhairday I’m having.
Speaking of artificial intelligence… check out this Emoji Scavenger Hunt! AI helps identify objects around you that match up with the emojis that came from them.
Fun and Games
So fun! Just visit 7up.com on your phone to find the Digital Bartender. Then stand your phone next to your adult beverage glass and pour ingredients as advised.
To disprove the idea that kids today don’t read, the New York Public Library created Instagram stories for novels… Voila the #instanovel.
Remember IFTTT, the tool that connects cloud-based services to automate all kinds of little tasks? Well, Domino’s created little automations to trigger a Domino’s order if it’s your birthday or if it snows more than 4 inches or if your plane lands or…. You gotta visit If This Then Dominos…