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Google Gadgets Come to You 122

An anonymous reader writes "Yahoo is reporting the release of "Google Gadgets", 1,220 dynamic applications for use on your web pages, without needing to connect to Google. 'Google Gadgets range from a miniature look-up for Google Maps or Google Calendar to independent applications ranging from financial information to sports to communication tools and jokes, horoscopes or geometric puzzle game Tetris.'"
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Google Gadgets Come to You

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  • by AltGrendel ( 175092 ) < minus painter> on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:00PM (#16308895) Homepage
    ... I love the irony of Yahoo reporting this.
    • Re:Sorry, but.. (Score:4, Informative)

      by crayz ( 1056 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:11PM (#16309099) Homepage
      Try Reuters. The submitter got it wrong
      • Try Google []. The submitter got it really wrong.
      • The worst part is that a lot of 'news' articles aren't even the full article.

        Whatever editors take the original & hack it down to size before 'publishing' it.

        This is one of the reasons I hit up Google News for articles without many details. The article usually isn't that way because there aren't any details, but because they've been stripped out.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      "I love the irony of Yahoo reporting this."

      I dunno how ironic that is. Yahoo's positioning themselves as a news source. They wouldn't be so newsworthy if they conveniently left out news from competitors. Heck, even MSNBC's website posts news about Microsoft exploits.

    • Re:Sorry, but.. (Score:5, Informative)

      by jwest ( 21646 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:20PM (#16309247)
      See how the first words of the article are "SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters)" ? The story comes from the Reuters wire service. Yahoo is just passing it along... .

      This submission should have read "Reuters is reporting the release of 'Google Gadgets'".
      • by BeanBunny ( 936648 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:35PM (#16309469)
        Not that I agree with the Belgian government, but this makes it easy to see why they don't want Google to display their news. If this story gets put up like this on a popular edited Web site like Slashdot, it would appear to be safe to assume that many people believe that Google News, Yahoo! News, and MSN news are all authoring their own stories.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by drinkypoo ( 153816 )
          a popular edited Web site like Slashdot

          You must be new here.

        • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          You may have just mistyped yourself, but the Belgian government has positively nothing to do with google not being able to display belgian news. That was a case between a belgian news publisher and google.
        • by E IS mC(Square) ( 721736 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @05:21PM (#16312059) Journal
          But there is huge difference between Yahoo News and Google News.

          Google News only reports the synposis of the news, pointing to the original website itself which served the the news. Yahoo News syndicates the news from other syndicating services and displays the news on their own freaking website.

          Stop comparing oranges and apple just to prove your non-existant point.
          • I agree that there is a difference between Yahoo! News and Google News, but I don't agree that it is as disparate as apples and oranges.

            IMHO, Apples and oranges would be comparing Google News to Wired Magazine in print. You read them both, but that's where the similarity ends. In this case, we have two major search engines displaying headlines to news stories and providing links to content. They are plenty similar to Joe Public who just looks at the front page to see what's up in the world today. It d

            • In this case, we have two major search engines displaying headlines to news stories and providing links to content.

              Again, I disagree. Show me one page where Google News is also displaying the content. A Google News link will take you to the orignal content provide if you want to read the full article, while Yahoo News provides you full contect of the article on their own site. Its still apples v/s oranges.
          • No kidding. Google News is just like Google Search - it shows a short summary / tease, and a link, and that's all. Yahoo actually has articles (syndicated) and an editorial staff. I'd think /.ers would know this ...
        • Oh give me a break. Just because some people are totally incompetent doesn't mean they can ruin it for the rest of us. I'm sorry, but if you manage to click on a google link to an article without seeing the name of the group doing the reporting, you only have yourself to blame. Not only this, but the link redirects you to the group's site, not even some article hosted by google (which seems to be the case with Yahoo).

          Just like the rest of us, Google can't fix stupid.
        • I thought I should point out Yahoo pays a lot of money to the wire services to display their stories. My father works for the Associated Press and told me Yahoo and AOL are now the AP's biggest customers. I imagine Reuters is in much the same boat. The point is, Yahoo is not simply copying this news under the guise of "aggregation" like Google does. They are paying hundreds of millions of dollars to become a full-fledged partner.
    • But no working link. (Score:2, Informative)

      by kcbnac ( 854015 )
      But they didn't put in a working link. Here it is: []
    • Yahoo helps Google Gadgets come to YOU!
    • ... I love the irony of Yahoo reporting this.

      Hey, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em!
    • by TheRoss ( 28211 )
      It's just a wire story, Reuters should be credited, not Yahoo.
  • Google r0xx0rz!
  • So...It's basically MySpace-type crap then?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by gunnk ( 463227 )
      Could be... but doesn't have to be.

      The cool part of this is that they are providing the code so that you can use any of these on your own website -- not just "their space". Of course, by showing you the code it also makes it easy for you to modify to suit your needs.

      As a developer I can appreciate having access to this.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by carpeweb ( 949895 )
        As a web site owner who is not a developer, I second that.

        Of course, widgets by themselves aren't going to make compelling content for my web site, but maybe I'll see something that brings in RSS feeds that I can manage to modify to bring in the right combination of content from elsewhere to stimulate a decent blog.

        And then I'll call a developer to fix whatever it is I've broken ... :)
      • I don't see anywhere on Google's gadgets page [] (as mentioned in the story) where they offer the code for you to add it to your own web site. Could anybody please point me in the right direction?
  • Oh, the irony! (Score:1, Redundant)

    by gsasha ( 550394 )
    "Yahoo is reporting the release of Google Gadgets".
  • "Yahoo is reporting the release of " Google Gadgets"
    Okay, my brain just exploded.

    Throw MSN into it as well next time. The brain-explody will reach much further and stain more carpet.
  • by jolyonr ( 560227 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:02PM (#16308941) Homepage
    Ok, so they have their standard disclaimer, but I saw a "Smiley of the Day" gadget from on offer on the first page of that.

    Doesn't anyone at Google QC this stuff?

    First thoughts are after seeing that - I'm not going to trust ANY of that stuff on websites I have anything to do with.

    • by johkir ( 716957 ) <{ude.sivadcu.htmv} {ta} {ybrikoj}> on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:31PM (#16309415)
      My thoughts exactly. I assumed Google just put it out there, so anyone could put up a web-widget. And looking at the disclaimer at the bottom of the page, that seems to be the case.

      Much of the content in this directory was developed by other companies or by Google's users, not by Google. Google makes no promises or representations about its performance, quality, or content. Google doesn't charge for inclusion in this directory or accept payment for better placement.

      Maybe Google should protect it's name and prevent spyware garbage.

    • by gosand ( 234100 )
      Doesn't anyone at Google QC this stuff?

      I just want to thank you for using the proper terminology, and not saying "QA this stuff". Pet peeve of mine, being involved in Software QA and QC for 13 years now. QA != QC != SQA

      • by cichlid ( 463444 )
        > I just want to thank you for using the proper terminology,
        > and not saying "QA this stuff"

        Any noun can be verbified
    • It has the ability to track users, while the tracking is not on by default, plenty of other toolbars with the same functionality or without tracking functionality is marked as spyware by AdAware, Symantac, etc...
  • Wake me when there's a googol of them.

  • by Orange Crush ( 934731 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:05PM (#16308997)
    I was going to make a Soviet Yahoo pun . . . but my heart's just not in it.
  • Google News (Score:2, Insightful)

    Apparently, Google news didn't think this was news worthy. []
  • It's just a depository of Gadgets, which doesn't mean they made them. Like the things you can find on the google search engine, they didn't make those pages, they just made them easily accessible.
    • The API is open, so you are free to write your own, should you wish/be able.

      I would think having a published API would be more important than the number of already available gadgets.

    • No, they didn't make them (well they made some of them), but they did provide the API for the gadgets, without which there would be no gadgets.
  • in Opera browser since v.9.0 ... see the following page: [] Opera rox!
  • by quokkapox ( 847798 ) <> on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:13PM (#16309137)

    The deal with these things is, they work with Google Desktop Search, and they pop up when you hit SHIFT-SHIFT.

    Some of them are pretty cool, and some are a pain in the ass. Several I've tried are downright buggy, and I have some serious questions about security.

    You really don't know what you're getting into when you download and allow random code to freely run on your PC. I would assume the gadgets run with the same privileges as GDS itself. Or are they sandboxed?

    Anyway, it sure is handy to know I've made 219,430 keystrokes and 26,690 mouse clicks since Thursday. Oh, and that it's warm and sunny outside. And that my battery is charged. Well, the scratch pad is nice. It always auto-saves.

    • by thelost ( 808451 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:18PM (#16309215) Journal
      is there a dell batter-explode-o-meter gadget too, so you can see when you battery is going to commit sepuku?
    • I have just been playing with the gadgets, and I don't have Google toolbar. They ended up on the personalized homepage ( The /. article says you can use these "on your webpage", but I think it should be "on your Google homepage".
      • by Tacvek ( 948259 )
        They started out on Google Personalized Homepage. Then GDS got them. Next Google Pages hosted sitews were able to use them. Now they can be used on any page.
    • by us7892 ( 655683 )
      Is there a way to put a Google widget on a page of your own WITHOUT getting the google footnote and link auto-inserted by google?

      Here is a treefrog, if slashdot would allow it:

      <script src=" n 0&title=__MSG_title__&.lang=de&.country=ALL&border =%23ffffff%7C3px%2C1px+solid+%23999999&output=js"> </script>

      Of course, slashdot will not allow it, but you can paste int
    • You really don't know what you're getting into when you download and allow random code to freely run on your PC.

      True, but the same is true when you purchase software (including the OEM software that came with the box itself), and also when you insert certain treacherous DRM-enabled audio discs into an insufficiently protected Windows box (e.g. Sony rootkit fiasco). So it's not really a question of how you obtain the code, but whether you trust the party providing it. In Google's case, at least they have an

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:14PM (#16309149)
    Go, go, gadget google!
  • I've been looking for something like this for a while now. With the exception of SQL and a bit of HTML, I have little programming experience. This link: [] shows you how to insert the code into your pages. Just an FYI!
  • However, (Score:4, Funny)

    by Shadyman ( 939863 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:18PM (#16309211) Homepage
    In Soviet Russia, Gadgets Google YOU!
  • The news is that they've released a means to put them on non-Google web-pages; "Google Gadgets" have been around for a while for Google Desktop, the Google Personalized Homepage, and Google Pages.

  • I guess they could have called them "Wadgets"? What about "Widgetts"?
  • by DarthChris ( 960471 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:23PM (#16309283)
    ...who read the title as "Google gadgets come to get you"?
  • geometric puzzle game Tetris

    The expression No shit, Sherlock springs to mind...

    Also, please congratulate me on my first "Come on, this is slashdot" rant!
    • by djnaz ( 1001724 )
      Ha ha, writing about Google Gadgets and describing what Tetris is,
      is just like telling that new BMW's come with smaller steering wheel (the little circle, that allows to turn)...

      Come on, Asteroids? And what's that? ;)
  • by chipster ( 661352 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @02:31PM (#16309417)
    Actually, Reuters [] is reporting it. Yahoo! is simply syndicating it.
  • I'm glad the submitter saw fit to explain what Tetris is, otherwise we'd all be scratching our heads.
  • TFA had the wrong link... [] is right. Seems like a neat idea. Aside from the Google icon and 'footnote.' which could detract from it being useful. I saw a use for these as a menu on a site or a nice customizable RSS display. This seems the best way yet to run /. And other feed headlines on my site. More than one a page might be annoying with the branding but time will tell. It would be far more useful if you could inline and store data.
    • Of course now I can have Google maps and calendar and other gadgets on sites. That makes more attractive. That is until MS blocks them.
  • It looks to me like this is just a ripoff of WebPasties [] only with more numerous but simpler gadgets.
  • Doesn't that sound a bit verbose? Really, anybody reading this sort of article knows what Tetris is already...

    I know, I know, I'm offtopic.
  • Where's the news? (Score:3, Informative)

    by GoNINzo ( 32266 ) < minus city> on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @03:14PM (#16310007) Journal
    Er, these have been around for awhile as part of the personalized home page stuff. I know because I've been using them for like 3 months or so. I should search back through slashdot, but this is such a dupe. [] is the real page, which would have been nice to link to. Just click in the upper left corner to add more clutter to your home page.

    I just wish a few of them were more customizable.

  • From TFA : (Score:4, Interesting)

    by g253 ( 855070 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @03:28PM (#16310243) Homepage
    "Before these mini-Web based applications can go mainstream, however, Google and the others will have to do away with the need to "cut and paste" code and make it possible to install such programs on Web sites in a few clicks"

    Please! Cut and paste is too complicated to create a website? Hello?
    This is in fact something I like about google : they try to be friendly to joe average user, but not to the point of thinking all their users are brain-dead.

    When I was young we used to write all our html from scratch, using vi, on a vt100. And we didn't complain!
  • I noticed that the height of these buggers (that's what I'm calling them) is limited to 157 pixels if you place them on an XHTML page -- even if you specify a different height. I'm sure there's a simple reason why. And the Pacman one isn't working in IE (I know, who cares).
  • by Critical Facilities ( 850111 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @03:52PM (#16310609)
    How can your web page miss with this winner? []
  • I use personalized google homepage for a while with a bunch of rss feeds. When I could not find a stream with a kind of information I would like in my frontpage, I started writing my own gadgets ( []). What google does provide is a a nice set of functions to fetch a website, and using javascript parse it to form a new html to display inside the gadget. Homepage gadgets can be used in google desktop but not vice versa. Gadgets use html and javascript, you can open them in a text edit
  • I don't like it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Mori Chu ( 737710 ) on Wednesday October 04, 2006 @04:18PM (#16311011)
    I'm sorry, but haven't we already seen this in several different incarnations before? Microsoft's "Active Desktop" in Win98. Konfabulator. Apple's Dashboard.

    What is this obsession with "widgets", "applets", and "gadgets"? They inevitably end up doing the exact same boring things: weather, sports scores, stocks, dictionary, and maybe a little game. Great. The world of computing has changed forever.

    These things are often bloated little programs because they have to run in JavaScript or some other awful language. They never have consistent UIs, so users can't learn many patterns from using one that they can apply to another. Also, it looks like Google doesn't retain any quality control over who can submit "gadgets", so I'm sure it's bound to be abused by people who want to make malware.

    This is a prime example of a "me, too" project, and I fail to see how Google's done it any better than the predecessors. At least with Gmail and Google Maps they innovated those applications compared to what came before. And how does this make Google any money whatsoever? Will they put ads in the gadgets? Why should any stockholder be pleased that Google developers are wasting their time on "gadgets"?

    Thumbs down, Google. I am not impressed.
    • I think it's fine. These capabilities first came attatched to the Google Sidebar. It takes very little programming to make them detachable. I don't see why this is newsworthy (They have been detachable for a couple of months now) or something to fret about.
  • Somehow the fact that Yahoo! has had Yahoo! Widgets [] for months, seems to shine down on the Google Gadgets. Recently, I did up a Spidermonkey+ZZiplib hack to get Y!'s widgets running on my linux box [] - it is not impossible for Konfabulator to work elsewhere either. But in general, I didn't expect Google to much of a follower into a market, but it seems that recently they've been doing that ?

    Gmail was innovation ... *shrug*

    • by batkiwi ( 137781 )
      So you can put yahoo widgets on your homepage? Last I checked yahoo widgets were small things you put on your desktop, much like the OSX ones, and not simple aids to get neat stuff on your personal homepage.

      When did yahoo make HTML-ized widgets, and how can I add them to my page?
    • Actually this announcement is quite different, Google gadgets allow you to post these widgets on YOUR webpage. Yahoo's widgets are for your desktop only. :)
  • Isn't it unfortunate that all these Google Gadgets, Yahoo or Opera Widgets, and whatnot have to be coded in that so-boring javascript?

    I wish I could replace the Yahoo widget engine by some new Perl widget engine, which would take care of displaying the stuff in the GUI from simple and elegant Perl code and XML. That would be cool.

    (No, TK doesn't count. Nor does wxPerl. It needs to be much simpler)
  • I think that they are pretty cool. I wrote one to display my photographs: []
  • Google Gadgets has a Wikipedia search gadget and a dictionary gadget.

    In Firefox I bookmarked [] , gave it keyword 'w', and just enter "{Ctrl-L}w anime" to jump to a Wikipedia article. The %s gets replaced by the rest of what you type in the location field.

    Here are some more:

    Merriam-Webster dictionary: ary&va=%25s []
    IMDB search:
    directions from your house (keyword "
  • From

    Mesa Dynamics released Amnesty Generator [] 0.5b, a utility that converts any Google web page gadget into a Mac OS X Dashboard widget. The software "automates the process of embedding [Google's] gadget code into locally hosted web pages that are implemented inside Dashboard widgets."

In the realm of scientific observation, luck is granted only to those who are prepared. - Louis Pasteur