Every few weeks there’s a boatload of new Dashboard Widgets that pulls up to the dock. Widgets are nearing 2,000 in number; many colorful eye candy, some excellent, a few useful, and some totally worthless.
Here’s a look at Widget that struck my fancy over the past few weeks. Some are so good I’ve added them to my collection.
Other Widgets are so ugly and useless that they’re added to the collection of Don’t Touch This—Ever.™
I like comics. As you would expect, there’s more than a handful of Widgets that display comics.
The best is Say Cheese by Killer Widgets. It’s another in a long line of free Widgets that, once you put into Dashboard, you wonder why you didn’t have it before.
Say Cheese lets you browse your favorite comics without buying a newspaper and without searching the internet.
Not only is Say Cheese attractive, it’s loaded with features that actually work (something that can’t be said for all Widgets).
The comics you get include Adam@Home, B.C., Calvin and Hobbes, Ctrl-Alt-Del, Dilbert, Drabble, FoxTrot, Garfield, Get Fuzzy, Kevin and Kell, Liberty Meadows, Little Gamers, Luann, Monty, Mother Goose & Grimm, Over The Hedge, Peanuts, Pearls Before Swine, Penny Arcade, Rose is Rose, Shaw Island, Shoe, Sinfest, Sluggy Freelance, Unfit, UserFriendly, Wulffmorgenthaler.
The feature list is loaded considering it’s such a deceptively simple Widget. You get previous comic, next comic, today’s comic, selecting a specific date, random comic, minimizing, stretching, smooth animations, auto-refresh (with a warning label when in mini-mode), auto-flip-back, remembers the last new comic, and more.
Weather us on everyone’s mind these days and there are plenty of Dashboard Widgets to go around.
What I like about Dashboard is the ability to set up a Hot Corner to invoke the Dashboard screen. For me, I set up the upper right corner. So all I have to do is move my mouse to the right corner and, bingo, Dashboard and Widgets.
And weather. Not just Weather Pop or Meteo in the menu bar. But a graphical representation of weather in multiple locations, including radar. Cool.
I set up multiple weather Widgets to different cities and put them in the upper right corner. Beside them I set up multiples of Radar in Motion. That’s for a look at the weather radar for a particular area.
In one flick of the wrist I can see the weather, temperatures, and radar for where I live, where my parents live, and where close friends live. No clicks. Just move the wrist. Cool.
For the techies among us, there’s a need to monitor web sites to see if they’re running or not. We need email warnings, cell phone message warnings, whatever. I have multiple applications (commercial) that do the trick.
I also found a very cool Widget that does the trick on my Mac. It’s called Watch Mouse.
Watch Mouse is a small widget that monitors a web site every five minutes. If the site is up, no noise. If the site is down (or, simply can’t be reached at the moment), Watch Mouse beeps and opens a web page alert in Safari.
For multiple web sites, open multiple instances of Watch Mouse. There’s not many bells and whistles but the price is right. Free.
Now for some ugly. Where will you be on November 23, 2005? Not sure? Me neither. Regardless, it’s an important date because “RENT” the movie comes out.
So, in fine fashion for the ‘Why Do People Do This Category’, there’s Rent Countdown, which counts down the number of days, hours, minutes, and seconds until Rent is released.
Seriously, some folks need to rent a life. Besides, Rent Countdown Widget is ugly.
As a final note, check out Apple’s Top Widget Downloads. What a shock. It’s amazing what some people find interesting.
Among the top 10 is Apple Computers Widget. It’s not from Apple but it’s totally worthless.
What you get is a small box with a list of Apple’s computers. Select one, and the small box becomes a picture of that computer. Cool? Not.
Got a favorite new Dashboard Widget? Tell us about it.