Google Gadgets, Widgets and Moduls

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If you’ve never used it before, you’ll want to give it a try: Google Desktop is a handy tool, which enables you to search within your personal data in seconds. Fresh Google Gadget Plugins can make your search even more efficient, particularly if you are searching for videos, images or non-plaintext-files; besides, as web-developer you can also use numerous Gadgets and Moduls to personalize your sidebar and put some useful tools or web-services on your personal desktop. We’ve chosen some of the most interesting extensions, plugins, gadgets, widgets and moduls, checked them out and listed below – in a brief and descriptive overview. Links checked: July/14. 2008.

Google Desktop-Gadgets

Gagdets and Moduls can serve the same purpose, however, originally they were developed for different applications. Gadgets (.gg-files) are supposed to be used in Google Desktop, Moduls (.xml-files) however should be installed as Widgets on the Google Personalized Homepage. Since moduls were designed for personalized homepage, they have to be integrated manually in Google Desktop. In order to do that, type the URL of .xml-file in the field below the menu “Add Gadgets” and download it, clicking on “Search Gadgets”. Google Gadgets & Module:

PC-Tools

  • Desktop Netstat
    Desktop Netstat is a handy plugin for Google Desktop that allows you to monitor your computer’s network connections in realtime. Includes: All TCP connections, Configurable update speed, Host name lookup, Details View for each connection.
  • Mit gdTunes
    gdTunes controls the iTunes and Winamp music players. In addition to the standard controls (next song, play/pause, previous song, and show/hide music player), gdTunes shows the song information (name, artist, and album), album artwork (iTunes only), and the song rating
  • Mini Control Panel
    At the top of the panel you have the time, date and the number of your online Google Talk Friends, this data being refreshed every minute. Then you have an extensive set of buttons with control panel properties, useful programs and a Run box at the bottom in which you can type just what you would type in the Run dialog and then hit enter or click the arrow button to launch the desired program. You can also view CPU and memory usage statistics + enable your favorite settings in the gadget options.
  • Performance Power Monitor
    This is a sidebar plug-in that will monitor CPU and display the battery charge and drain rate on a graph as well as show the battery charge capacity and time remaining on the battery. I will log the charge and drain rate to an HTML file as a log file.
  • QuickLaunch Panel
    QuickLaunch gives you easy access to your files and folders and lets you launch them from your Google Desktop Search Sidebar. It also includes a direct preview for image and text files. You can use QuickLaunch to browse your favorite folder, your entire file system, add your startmenu to the sidebar or just add your mostly used applications to the sidebar.

Life Management

  • Goocal
    This panel will show you today’s events from your Google Calendar at one quick glance. An event’s time and location is displayed, and with one click, it takes you to Google Calendar.
  • Google Calendar V2
    Have a miniature copy of your Google Calendar (http://calendar.google.com) at your side at all times. Easily add, view and share events without leaving the comfort of your own gadget.
  • News
    See the latest headlines, personalized based on the articles you read in Sidebar and in your browser.
  • E-Mail
    You can read new email, including Gmail, as soon as you get it. Click on an email subject to read the full email in the details pane. You can prevent specific email from showing up in Sidebar by adding filters via this pane’s Options.
  • Scratch Pad
    Type and save notes for yourself. The Scratch Pad automatically saves itself whenever you type a character in it, so you don’t even have to worry about remembering to hit ‘save.’ In Options, you can save your notes to a file or clear the Scratch Pad.
  • Quick Email
    This module lets you send a quick e-mail.
  • TODOinSYNC – tab, sync & do
    This is the gadget to use if you want to categorize your to-do list. You have 4 tabs, and you can share the green tab with a Google Talk friend. Additionally, a display of the remaining tasks number and an in-gadget animated tutorial are also available.

Web-Tools:

  • Adsense Status
    View earnings information from your Google Adsense account in the Google Desktop sidebar. Available information: page impressions, clicks, page CTR, page eCPM, and your earnings.
  • Auction Watch eBay
    eBay Auction Watch is a Google Desktop Sidebar plugin that allows eBay enthusiasts to easily track prices and bids for selected auctions. Simply enter auction numbers into Auction Watch and have quick access to updated details in your Sidebar. Auction Watch can even notify you before auctions end or when auctions close.
  • Del.icio.us Desktop Plugin and Del.icio.us Module
    View your del.icio.us bookmarks and tags in the Google Sidebar. Bookmarks that you use often are automatically displayed higher in the list. (You can, of course, reset the usage data via the options dialog.) If you want certain favorites to stay at the top of list, you can ‘pin’ them there.
  • gdPMetrics
    Performancing Metrics is a blog statistics tool that offers statistics for blog-specific data. gdPMetrics is a Google Desktop Sidebar plugin that enables you to monitor these statistics from your desktop.
  • gdRSS Reader
    gdRSS Reader is a handy tool for reading RSS feeds, which integrates with Google Desktop Sidebar and notifies you about news in the RSS feeds you have chosen with the poll frequency you have specified and highlighting the news with the color you want, which makes gdRSS Reader the unique Google Desktop Sidebar plugin for reading RSS News..
  • Hotkey Search Tool
    Run an Internet search on a phrase selected in any application. The program will open a browser window with search results for this phrase using the selected search engine. Search encyclopedias, dictionaries, translators and more. The program also supports searching with the Google Desktop. The flexible configuration of the program will allow you to specify the resources used.
  • Photos on Flickr
    View photos from Flickr. Limit photos by tag or username if desired. Show one large photo or nine smaller photos.
  • RSS2PDF
    Free Online RSS, Atom or OPML to PDF Generator
  • Wikipedia Search,Dictionary.com,IMDBand Ip Address Lookup
    Wikipedia: A Wikipedia Search and Go widget. Dictionary.com: allows you to lookup keywords in Dictionary.com, Thesaurus.com, or Reference.com. IMDB in a module: search IMDB right inside the gadget. IP Address Lookup: determines your IP address and shows information (host, location…) about any IP address entered
  • Skype Plug-In
    The Skype Plugin allows you to: See your Skype Credit. View & call your favorite Skype users. Call your favorite Skype Out friends/colleagues. Quick dial everyone else
  • Technorati Tracker
    Uses Technorati Mini to track new blog posts for a topic (tag) you define.
  • Translate
    This software uses Google’s Translate, to translate the text you enter into another language. Explanation on how to enter the language options are explained in Help, which can be got by clicking the “?”.
  • Web Site Information Tool
    Use this tool to request the Google PageRank and other website information provided by Alexa.
  • Uptime monitor
    mon.itor.us – free website and web server monitoring service allows to monitor your website performance and availability.

Moduls- and Gadgets-Libraries

  • Gadget Designer
    The Google Desktop Gadget Designer is an integrated development environment (IDE) for Sidebar gadget design that lets you quickly prototype or modify your gadget’s UI and test its performance. This document assumes familiarity with the principles, objects, and interfaces described in the Creating a Gadget document.

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Vitaly Friedman loves beautiful content and doesn’t like to give in easily. Vitaly is writer, speaker, author and editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine. He runs responsive Web design workshops and loves solving complex problems in large companies. Get in touch.

  1. 1

    Wasn’t it true that at one point of time downloading Google Desktop would render your broadband connection useless?

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  2. 2

    Nice list! I love my iGoogle desktop. One addition for you… http://tinyurl.com/oa893m is an SMS messaging service straight form google desktop, very handy way to SMS friends, family and work colleagues..one i use all the time.

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