How to pass the time until the Super Bowl kickoff

Via the Web you can send your friend a beer, see all the past Super Bowl commercials, and participate in a debate about which ones are best.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
3 min read

The Super Bowl is Sunday, and undoubtedly many of you are gearing up for a big weekend filled with fun, excitement, and a Cardinals victory (yeah, I said it). Some of you might have a checklist filled with snacks and drinks you want to pick up before Sunday, but I'm here to tell you that that's not all you should have on that list. Snacks are great and drinks are better, but once your fridge is stocked, you'll want something to help you pass the time.

Be nice with Give Real
Want to be the nice person this weekend? Then sign up for Give Real and send your friends a Pittsburgh Pint or an Arizona Ale.

You log on to Give Real's site, give it your credit card information, and send a gift of beer to your friends. You can suggest a particular beer for your friends to try out and add a personal message. But it's not like the beer goes through the mail: Once the recipient gets the gift notification, they accept it by registering for Gift Real and inputting their own credit card information. When that's complete, they can buy a beer at any restaurant or bar and once that transaction posts to their account, Give Real will refund their money and take the cost of the beer out of your account.

Credit card monitoring may not sound too appealing and I wouldn't be too happy sending my credit card information to a start-up that I've never heard of, but when it comes to the Super Bowl and to beer, all bets are off.

See the past with Hulu
Hulu, the professional video content site that's backed by NBC and Fox, may have a Super Bowl ad this year, but that's not all its doing for the big game. Friday, the company announced that you can view all the commercials from Super Bowl XLII on its site.

The page features all the best commercials from the past year--55 in all--and to be quite honest, I didn't realize how entertaining many of them are. I enjoyed my 30 minutes watching all the commercials. I think you will, too.

Once you find some you like, you can also use Hulu's widget, which it unveiled Friday, that allows you to post your favorite commercials to your blog. It's a neat tool that works well.

But there's more. This year's Super Bowl will have, of course, its own commercials. And instead of just telling your friends about them Monday morning, you can actually show them which were your favorite, since Hulu will be adding each commercial to its Super Bowl page as soon as they air Sunday.

Watch even more commercials on SuperBowl-Ads.com

SuperBowl-Ads.com provides past commercials, much like Hulu does, but it goes one better: you can view commercials from Super Bowls dating back to 1998. It even has a few ads that aired earlier than that.

What's better on a Saturday afternoon when you're waiting for Sunday's game than to sit back and watch old commercials that you probably forgot about? Remember the old Budweiser commercials? They're on SuperBowl-Ads.com. So are all the GoDaddy commercials and just in case you're wondering, so is Apple's famous 1984 ad.

That said, there isn't an exhaustive collection of commercials and a bunch that I loved in the past are missing. Regardless, the site is still worth trying out.

Get your debate on with Twitter

I love all the ways Twitter is being used, and for those at Boston ad agencies or Boston University, they can use it another way: to debate which Super Bowl ads are best.

According to a report from the Boston Globe, a real-time Twitter debate will start before the opening kickoff to allow everyone in the community to pick their favorite commercials and support their opinions against others who might disagree.

Granted, the debate is being used as a marketing ploy by ad agencies that want to promote their brand, and it's only being pitched to people in and around Boston, but who cares? That doesn't mean you can't start your own debate, or crash the Boston party.