You’re a closet Dashboard Widget user just like me, right? I confess. I use Widgets. I prefer not to admit it in mixed company.
Everyone seems to have an opinion on Widgets, the Hillary Clinton of Mac OS X utilities. I like the Widgets that do something nice, don’t get in the way, and don’t cost much.
My favorite Widget this week is one that is sorely needed for a mother of two rapidly approaching over-the-hill status and sliding down the ramp of forgetfulness into that dark bog of parenthood.
In other words, there’s too much going on to keep track of it all and what I dearly need is something simple to remind me of what I need to do next. Don’t remind me to use iCal, please. I use it. I just forget to have it open so iCal won’t track what I don’t tell it to track.
Then along came ReminderWidget 2.0. Had it only been around to remind me to stock up on birth control pills and other accoutrements of adulthood and pending disasters.
ReminderWidget is about as appropriate a name as you can get, with a value proposition approaching CheapTickets. It’s a Widget. It reminds you of things.
Alright, there’s a little more. It’s a Widget that you enter in reminders and it keeps track of them in iCal by placing a new event for the time and date and calendar you chose for the entry.
Like all good Widgets worthy of my time and effort, ReminderWidget is elegant, simple, even. And free. And always there, as Dashboard Widgets tend to be.
I’m the digital age electronic egg timer woman. I use a variety of little utilities to remind me of something that I need to do in 20 minutes, or an hour, or later this morning or whatever. I forget things. Like buying diapers.
It’s true. I once set my little onscreen egg timer for an hour so it would beep to remind me to take the truck to Wal-Mart for a couple of palettes of Huggies. It beeped right on time. I couldn’t remember what I reminded myself.
Then I remembered. Sure, duct tape and one of my husband’s old t-shirts worked as a temporary diaper (aren’t they all?), but it raised a few eyebrows as I toted my daughter through the aisles of Wal-Mart in search of an emergency supply of Pampers.
Life is better these days, thanks to ReminderWidget. All I need to do is flick my wrist, up pops Dashboard with all my Widgets. Then I enter the reminder name and the time and then set the alarm. When the time arrives, iCal pops up a little reminder window. iCal doesn’t even need to be running.
Is that cool, or what?
The only problem I’ve run into with ReminderWidget is what I affectionately refer to as iCal clutter. Since I can post a dozen reminders before lunch, by early evening, when my husband sits down at the Mac, there’s a trail of what I reminded myself plastered all over iCal.
I call it iCal clutter. It’s cute, but he never laughs. Then I show him what happened to one of his t-shirts and what a little duct tape can do. He still didn’t laugh.
You would think that such a highly valuable Widget would show up on Apple’s Top 10 Widget Show. It doesn’t. What does that say about the effectiveness of a good birth control plan?
Number 1 on the list is the popular iStat Pro which tells you stuff about your Mac’s system that only matters to those who dink around their Mac’s system.
It won’t show you how to fold the corners of cloth diapers so what’s inside won’t leak out. It won’t show you the status of what your daughter just ate and how likely it is to show up sooner, rather than later in the aforementioned diapers.
Do you have any idea what kind of mess Kaboom leaves behind? Somehow that reminds me of the Plasma Tube Motion Light Widget, which, amazingly, considering what it doesn’t do, which is anything worthwhile, is Number 2 on Apple’s list.
My favorite this week is Mahattan Live!, a web cam from New York. I haven’t seen Mac360’s Kate MacKenzie yet, but I have seen crowds, crowded streets, and more people in one place than since Wal-Mart miss-priced their all-natural Viagra substitutes.
What I really want to see in useful Dashboard Widgets is a nanny cam. Plug in a remote camera in the bedroom or wherever, and the image shows up in a Widget on your Mac or on your iPhone. That’s a Widget worth a little money.
Got a favorite Dashboard Widget? Share your pick with Mac360 readers in the Comments section below.