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Google Widgets: A Review

Posted by on December 14, 2005

For those of you who have been living in a cave the past few years, there is a little start-up that is threatening to take the world by storm: Google. This is one of the few companies that has Bill Gates looking over his shoulder to see who is gaining on him. I am a huge fan of Google, and I make use of many of their offerings: Gmail, Google news, and Google’s Personalized Home Page are among my favorites… not to mention Google search. I highly recommend you check out each of these. Gmail is still by invitation only I believe, but I have many available. Post a comment and let me know, and I will be glad to hook you up. The other services are available for anyone.

For those of you who already use Google’s Personalized Home Page, you might be excited to learn about the newly available widgets. I am still playing with what is available, but I thought I would give a quick review in case anyone is interested.

Weather Map – The jury is still out on this one. There is already a weather blurb available, but this is a neat little map complete with icon clouds to show where the storms are. The mapping technology seems similar to Google Maps. I will let you know if I decide to keep it.

Date & Time
– I like it. The clock is analog, the date is big, and I can see both on my computer screen from a distance. It makes my life a little bit easier when I am writing out hall passes. I am keeping this one.

Customize the Google Logo – Fun… but why? I couldn’t even find a Christmas one today. I might keep it, but it won’t affect my life one way or another.

Color Junction – Similar to the game Jawbreaker on my PDA, but not as much fun. I will probably ditch this one.

Eyes – Okay, I get it. The eyes will follow my cursor. I just don’t see what is supposed to be exciting about it. It is already gone.

For any of you out there who are using Google’s Personalized Home Page, have you found any more widgets out there? I can see the potential, but so far I am a little disapointed at the offerings.

3 Responses to Google Widgets: A Review

  1. David Russell

    This is definitely a service that will improve over time. Hopefully it will be accepted by the developer community and we’ll see the directory of widgets expand.

    Yahoo widgets (built from Konfabultor) is definitely killing Google’s version. But, you can’t beat being web-based. :) And you just can’t beat being Google.

    FYI Gmail is wide open now.

    Very nice review and opinion on this service.

  2. byron

    mac has had them for a while. glad you PC guys are “catching up!!!!”

  3. Pooch

    It’s not a widget, but don’t forget Google Earth…a great way to tour the grand canyon without the 1 mile vertical descent/ascent. Spy on your neighbors…find secret places…

    Try locating N37°14’15.6″ W115°48’56.37″


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