You call them “Widgets”, I call them “Gadgets”

September 14th, 2005

Yesterday, Microsoft announced Windows Gadgets for the [tag]Windows Sidebar[/tag] in [tag]Vista[/tag], for and Windows SideShow (also know as Auxiliary Display Gadgets).

OK, what are Gadgets? Well, this is how Sean Alexander, senior product manager for Windows says:

"What are [tag]Gadgets[/tag]? Gadgets are a new category of mini-application designed to provide information, useful lookup, or enhance an application or service on your Windows [tag]PC[/tag] or the Web. Examples might include a weather gadget running on your desktop or on your homepage, an [tag]RSS[/tag] Gadget that pulls in your favorite feeds, or an extension of a business application providing just-in-time status on the pulse of your business."

OK, currently this is just geek news, so why the fuss? Well, it's because Mac folks have had [tag]Widgets[/tag] for a while now and the similarity of the technologies (in both name and function) has caused some raised eyebrows. For example, as Ed Bott just said:

"This, of course, inspired guffaws, chortles, and snorts of derision from Mac experts like Dori Smith, who point out that this stuff was old news when Mac Widgets appeared in 2004."

Hmmm, who did what first seems to be a big topic for some (if we lived in that world it would still be an IBM PC) but I'm not going to get caught up in that other than to say that the Vista Sidebar was talked about over a year ago!

I just hope [tag]Microsoft[/tag] is thinking about one thing - SECURITY! Nothing would kill this faster than [tag]security[/tag] issues and I hope that this is uppermost at Microsoft.

All in all, I think that Windows Gadgets could really spawn some useful tools and utilities, but the security has to be right, and right from the start or people will switch it off right from the start and steer clear of it forever.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 14th, 2005 at 17:20 and is filed under PC Doctor Programming, PC Doctor's Thoughts. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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