Monday, August 15, 2005

The Konfabulator and The Widgets Combine Functionality and Fun

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What is a Widget, and what in the world is a Konfabulator? Never fear, the answers are right here. The Konfabulator is software that you download, then you can choose from approximately 1,000 small applications that run on the Konfabulator. If you have a Mac, you may already know what a widget is; they are part of the Mac OS. Don't have a Mac? You're in luck: The Konfabulator also runs on Windows. As the website says, "cross-platform goodness." There are widgets that are serious, and widgets that are fun. Example of a serious widget is the Atomic Clock Widget, for keeping your computer's time accurate, or the Weather Widget and the Radar Widget. There's even a blogging widget for Blogger that I grabbed, plus Kaim Widget, for AOL's Instant Messenger. For fun, there's a Classic Memory game Widget, and if you really want to know how fast you type, check out the Typing Speedometer Widget. Want to know what traffic is like in South Carolia, London, Canada, Stockholm, New York or Mexico City? No problem. The cam widgets are just the thing. If you read or speak German, play the German Lotto...the Dutch Lotto or the UK Lotto, yes, you guessed it...with a widget. Look up information on drugs and their side effects. Listen to a radio station. You can keep track of stocks, football schedules, and movie times. RSS widgets, a calculator widget (Green, no less), and a nifty little alien type guy in a flying saucer to keep you company as he drifts around your desktop will all help make your day more productive and more tun. Fun is a good thing. The array of widgets is wide enough to ensure just about anyone can find ones they enjoy. Read a scripture from the Bible; learn a new word,m play a gaame...the possibilities are nearly endless.

All of these nifty little gadgets -- er, widgets can be found in the Konfabulator Gallery. I found a Book Search Widget that would've been very handy when I was adding titles to my BookList; you can read reviews and compare prices also. I launched the Book Search Widget and typed in Harry Potter, then hit the Enter key and voila! listings of all the Harry Potter books appeared in my browser window. Can't get much handier than that. There are also Search Widgets if you're the type who can never get enough of searching and search engines. There are even widgets to make managing your widgets easy. THese folks think of everything. All of the widgets in the Gallery are free to download and free to use. They are neatly stored in a folder in your My Documents folder...but you can put them wherever you like.

If you are the do-it-yourself sort, you can even use a tutorial in the Konfabulator Workshop to build or improve your own Widgets. if you need help, click over to the Konfabulator Forums to post questions, sort out problems with a script, or even just to chat on the boards. Widgets are brought to you by Konfabulator and by Yahoo.