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Apple's Dashboard Widgets

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MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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David Hyatt updates his blog to provide some clarification on Apple's upcoming Dashboard Widgets.

I wanted to blog briefly to clear up what the widgets actually are written in. They are Web pages, plain and simple (with extra features thrown in for added measure). Apple's own web site says "build your own widgets using the JavaScript language", but that's sort of misleading. The widgets are HTML+CSS+JS. They are not some JS-only thing.

In other words, each widget is just a web page, and so you have the full power of WebKit behind each one... CSS2, DOM2, JS, HTML, XMLHttpRequest, Flash, Quicktime, Java, etc. I'll have a lot more to say later on, but I thought it important to clear that up right up front, since a lot of people were asking me about it in email and such.
 

Spock

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2002
2,176
1,828
Vulcan
Ok I want to control my iPod on my desktop like it were real Like a emulator just for fun
 

Frobozz

macrumors 65816
Jul 24, 2002
1,136
73
South Orange, NJ
Good to know

It's good to know that this is written on an existing technology. That really opens it up quite a bit. This will allow code ninjas like myself (a web designer) to build nearly anything. Pretty sweet.
 

Frobozz

macrumors 65816
Jul 24, 2002
1,136
73
South Orange, NJ
Spock said:
Ok I want to control my iPod on my desktop like it were real Like a emulator just for fun

It could certainly be done with XMLHTTPRequest and a little work. You basically just need an XML file working as the middleman between your iPod and the interface. I'm sure there might be some catches I haven't thought of.... but it sounds feasible.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,546
1,196
Not THAT's nice!

* Widgets in Flash

* Widgets from Dreamweaver (make your own interactive reference info easily)

* HTML manuals or saved sites to refer to

* Widgets all kinds of ways from people who don't know JS
 

Spades

macrumors 6502
Oct 24, 2003
461
0
I wonder what this means for my idea for a terminal widget. It would stink if I had to write a small web server to interface with the system. This is actually more limiting than I expected Dashboard to be...
 

7on

macrumors 601
Nov 9, 2003
4,939
0
Dress Rosa
Frobozz said:
It could certainly be done with XMLHTTPRequest and a little work. You basically just need an XML file working as the middleman between your iPod and the interface. I'm sure there might be some catches I haven't thought of.... but it sounds feasible.

Or an iTunes remote that looks like an iPod, and reads the songs from an attached iPod.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,546
1,196
Spades said:
I wonder what this means for my idea for a terminal widget. It would stink if I had to write a small web server to interface with the system. This is actually more limiting than I expected Dashboard to be...

All we knew before was JavaScript and that's still true--but now we know there are OTHER methods too. No new limits have been introduced by this news.

(I wonder how you get the eye candy from JS? Like the flipping stickies? And I wonder where alpha control comes from? I hope Flash widgets can be rendered with no bounding box!)
 

SilentPanda

Moderator emeritus
Oct 8, 2002
9,992
31
The Bamboo Forest
BrianKonarsMac said:
as well as konfabulator itself. they can't compete with apple and their CoreGraphics magic.

One good thing that can come out of this for the Konfabulator team is that... Windows people secretly want what Mac people have. They already have a start on a Windows version of Konfabulator. I think. I haven't read too much into it. But you know when you show your Windows friend Dashboard they'll immediately knock it and in a week have Konfabulator Windows version installed showing that they can do it to. It could be very beneficial to Konfabulator in that aspect.
 

soosy

macrumors regular
May 6, 2002
215
1
BrianKonarsMac said:
as well as konfabulator itself. they can't compete with apple and their CoreGraphics magic.

Actually, Core Image and Core Video are available to any developer. That's what's so great... no more "special stuff" reserved only for Apple to utilize (or at least a lot less).
 

Windowlicker

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2003
713
1
Finland
I never liked the idea of confabulator because it takes space on your desktop, but the same idea included in Exposé seems to make it pretty useful and I probably end up using it (i won't have the Calculator taking space on my dock anymore:).
 

Catfish_Man

macrumors 68030
Sep 13, 2001
2,579
1
Portland, OR
soosy said:
Actually, Core Image and Core Video are available to any developer. That's what's so great... no more "special stuff" reserved only for Apple to utilize (or at least a lot less).

Yeah, the dock still has a few special privileges (it can manipulate other applications' windows, like in the genie effect and exposé).
 

jragosta

macrumors 6502a
Jun 9, 2004
642
0
SilentPanda said:
One good thing that can come out of this for the Konfabulator team is that... Windows people secretly want what Mac people have. They already have a start on a Windows version of Konfabulator. I think. I haven't read too much into it. But you know when you show your Windows friend Dashboard they'll immediately knock it and in a week have Konfabulator Windows version installed showing that they can do it to. It could be very beneficial to Konfabulator in that aspect.


Konfabulator doesn't come close to what Dashboard offers. I found Konfabulator to be completley useless. Either the widgets have to be on top of everything else or on the bottom. Neither one is very practical if you have much stuff going on. With Dashboard, the widgets can be hidden and then appear with a keystroke. That's infinitely more useful.

BTW, as for Konfabulator's assertions that Apple stole this idea from them, they need to go back and look at Desk Accessories - which have been around for at least 15 years.
 

Wash!!

macrumors 6502
Jan 8, 2002
389
0
here, there, who knows
Here to that !!!

Windowlicker said:
I never liked the idea of confabulator because it takes space on your desktop, but the same idea included in Exposé seems to make it pretty useful and I probably end up using it (i won't have the Calculator taking space on my dock anymore:).

I used Konfabulator once and it bother me that all the widgets littler the desktop so I deleted it. the idea of them floating above the desktop is just very cool, since I'm a hologram designer this appeals to me because items floating above the "focal plane" is a very common thing to do in the hologram to introduce depth and "3D" to flat art..
 
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