favorite dashboard widgets

July 25th, 2005

Enough time has passed that there have been some genuinely useful Mac OS X 10.4 dashboard widgets released. Here’s some of my favorites:

Symphonic. This should have been built into Apple’s iTunes widget, but it’s worth using them both in conjunction. Type a song, hit return, and it plays. Pretty simple, works well.

Radar in Motion. Shows a semi-real-time weather radar map of your area. It’s nice to use when you look at Apple’s Weather widget and know it’s gonna rain, but it would be additionally nice to know if that means it’s gonna rain in three minutes, or three hours.

SingThatiTune. Grabs lyrics for the currently playing song. And does a very nice job of it, too.

Wikipedia. I still like the Wikipedia more in theory than in practice, but this is an exceptionally well designed widget.

Marquee. Gets local movie times. My only problem with this widget is that it is honkingly huge, with no way to keep it active but minimized.

Now Playing. Now this is just *cool*; it shows me what’s been recorded and what’s currently recording on my Tivo. However, it also suffers from the honkingly huge syndrome, but not as badly as this similar but not as pretty widget, which does the same thing but provides full show synopses as well.

Archive Films. This is another one I enjoy more in theory than in practice, but just the fact that you can get easy access to entire streamed movies via dashboard (even if they are all old and way cruddy) is amazing.

Speaking of widgets, here’s a shocker; Yahoo has bought Konfabulator and is giving it away free.

~jeff

3 Responses to “favorite dashboard widgets”

  1. Joshua says:

    This is what I think is interesting:

    Arlo Rose, Longtime Macintosh developer and CEO of Konfabulator parent company Pixoria, will be staying on to head the development of Konfabulator at Yahoo! With the title Director of Widget Technology, Schneider said that, “Arlo is going to continue to drive the vision for Konfabulator and push the envelope of the platform.”

    Rose also confirmed that the two engineers that worked on Konfabulator with him will also take jobs at Yahoo! to continue their work on the product, as well.

    I’d really like to see Arlo’s work out in a major forum again. And boy, could Yahoo use a makeover. Talk about clown diarrhea. (I just checked Yahoo and it’s almost 20% less buffodiarrhetic than last time I was at the site).

  2. Jeff says:

    Sure; and this is pretty interesting too:

    “Our focus is to never stray from multiple platforms,” Rose told MacCentral. “As a matter of fact, one of our goals is to investigate ways to open up Konfabulator to things like cell phones and maybe even Linux and your Tivo device. It’s about complete multi-platform distribution.”

    I’d love to see Konfabulator on my TV. That would be neat — although, the Tivo HME contest didn’t produce anything incredibly exciting.

  3. Joshua says:

    Wasn’t the problem there that you could do anything you wanted with the Tivo except for playing or recording video?

    Cuz, lame.