by Don Williams on July 20, 2007 in Software
As attractive as OS X is, one reason most people have fun with it is by adding a slew of widgets to help keep things interesting. Among the thousands available, you should have no problem finding a handful that you enjoy. To help get you started, we are taking a look at our personal favorites.
StuntManiaJnr is a game widget that allows you to drive a little stunt car around a cool stunt arena, filled with a large assortment of ramps, loops, platforms and other crazy things, but be careful not to smash and flip your stunt car over. So the next time you need a break from your other computing tasks, fire up this widget and try to grab the bonuses if you feel like it, or just drive around and go crazy! If you’re a gamer this little widget might just give you a big kick!
3D IP Lookup widget can bring IP geographical localization to your Dashboard in a compact, easy to use interface. Give it a IP address or a host name and this widget gathers path information running a traceroute and then converts the IP addresses to geographical coordinates using a web service. The output is a KML file that can be opened in Google Earth, showing a place mark for every node along the route.
This widget, of course, requires the use of an Internet connection and Google Earth (by the way, sometimes the traceroute command can take a very long time to run).
This widget now runs 4x faster than previous versions, but is still in early development, but works great as is. Any feedback to its developer, Claudio Procida, would be kindly appreciated. Ah, just one more reason to use Google Earth!
TrackIt is a widget for you numerical types. This widget will keep track of any number be it: Weight, Calorie, Miles, or whatever you like; and it will automatically create a simple graph to monitor progress. You can you use TrackIt for:
- Slimmers, to track your weight
- Dieters, to track your calorie intake
- Runners, can track their miles
- Golfers, can track their score
- Sportsmen, can to track their various averages
You can, in fact, easily track just about any number that you wish, be it one day, one week or one month at a time. Simply: enter your number for today, and a graph will automatically show you how it’s doing over time. View by week or zoom out up to a year. You even can track multiple numbers by simply opening multiple widgets.
Asteroid Run is a gaming widget set in the distant future, a future where mankind has developed racing fever space-racing fever that is! In this game contestants get to race in the most daring of all races… the Asteroid Run, a race that forces you to fly through rings while trying to avoid the dangerous asteroids. Few brave souls dare to take up the challenge and even fewer survive! Do you think you have what it takes to be a champion, then by all means, download this exciting widget and try your luck and find out
Radar In Motion is a Dashboard widget that grabs radar images from the Weather Channel or NOAA and displays the animation. You can easily access the radar for a given city in the United States or get a regional map, including several international maps. The widget has options for displaying and updating the maps, including weather alerts and the ability to save maps for a specified period of time. Educational, entertaining and useful.
Facebook Widget. If you’re a fan of the ever so popular Facebook, and who isn’t these days, you will appreciate this fully customizable widget that will notify you of:
- Friend Requests
- Group Invites
- Event Invites
This widget automatically gets new notifications directly from Facebook, or will allow you to manually refresh the widget for instant updates.
Blogger Widget is a widget that, as it’s name suggests, will allow you to add new posts automatically to your Google Blogger account. It is extremely simple to use and is handy for us types who like to blog, such as myself.
These, of course, are only a tiny fraction of the many thousands of widgets available OS X widgets available, so may we may revisit them in the future, but for now you don’t have to fidget over your widgets, just enjoy them!
Most of these widgets can either be found at Apple’s widget page or at http://www.versiontracker.com, http://macupdate.com or http://apple.com/downloads/dashboard/r=dbw.
Don Williams has been an Apple enthusiast since the earliest days and is a contributing editor for Techgage.com and you can find his blog here.
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