On the Radar: All Those Pretty Widgets Edition

* ??Heather Armstrong??: “How to medicate with legal substances”:http://www.dooce.com/archives/daily/04_21_2006.html. Two, we spread a layer of peanut butter on top because we ran out of spreadable cocaine.
* YouTube: “Apple Music Event 2001-The First Ever iPod Introduction”:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kN0SVBCJqLs. Steve Jobs introduces his little digital wonder to the world.
* ??Steve Pavlina??: “How to Get Up Right Away When Your Alarm Goes Off”:http://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2006/04/how-to-get-up-right-away-when-your-alarm-goes-off/ (“via”:http://www.lifehacker.com/software/sleep/how-to-get-up-when-you-really-want-to-169533.php). I’d love to try this out, but I have a feeling that simply _going to sleep at a decent hour_ might be just as effective.
* “Widgets”:http://automattic.com/code/widgets/, “widgets”:http://widgets.wordpress.com/, “widgets”:http://wordpress.org/development/2006/03/widgets-plugin/, “widgets”:http://wordpress.com/blog/2006/02/25/wordpress-widgets/, “widgets”:http://photomatt.net/2006/03/29/wordpress-widgets/ — the WordPress world is in love with them, and for good reason. Widgets make customizing WordPress even more accessible for mere mortals. A nice side benefit: they also make upgrading your theme much more painless. With the “ExecPHP”:http://widgets.wordpress.com/2006/04/10/execphp/ and default text widgets, you can make sidebar mods (such as advertising, etc.) without worrying about them getting overwritten after a theme upgrade. Great work.
* ??Seth Godin??: “Ode: How to tell a great story”:http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2006/04/ode_how_to_tell.html. Great stories are subtle. Surprisingly, the fewer details a marketer spells out, the more powerful the story becomes. Talented marketers understand that allowing people to draw their own conclusions is far more effective than announcing the punch line.
* ??Ken Walker??: “He Smells Like the Future”:http://blog.newarker.info/2006/04/26/he-smellslike-the-future/. On watching the Newark debut of Marshall Curry’s “Street Fight” (two years after the movie’s release) and Q&A with the director at Rutgers-Newark.
* ??LifeHacker??: “Download of the Day 2: Google SketchUp”:http://www.lifehacker.com/software/downloads/download-of-the-day-2-google-sketchup-170027.php. What the…?! Where did this program come from? I played with this a bit–it’s definitely complex, but interesting. Why would Google want us to play around with 3D modelling?
* ??Ben Goodger??: “Firefox 2: Safer, Faster, Better”:http://www.bengoodger.com/software/mb/2.0/firefox2-vision.html. It won’t have the much-coveted (and advertised) “Places”:http://wiki.mozilla.org/Places functionality, but Ben tells you why Firefox will _still_ be cool in 2.0. Can’t wait ’til “August”:http://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox2/Schedule!
* ??Steve Smith??: “Staying Small in a Big Place: Part 1″:http://orderedlist.com/articles/staying-small-in-a-big-place-part-1/. Kind of like “Getting the Basics Right”:http://relevantmagazine.com/life_article.php?id=7104 for teams. Good read.
* “Uno”:http://gui.interacto.net/ is an attempt to cut down on the GUI dissonance you might experience while using a Mac — all of the windows are made to look the same (rather than the ongoing conflict between “brushed metal”:http://daringfireball.net/2005/09/anthropomorphized and the “other guy”:http://daringfireball.net/2006/01/brushed_metal). There’s even a matching “Firefox theme”:http://takebacktheweb.org/, which makes FF look a lot less ugly in OS X.

One nice example of using widgets to hack your WP templates: I just set up a widget to carry some CSS code embedded in a “style” tag in my sidebar. I know, it’s right smack in the middle of my HTML which is “totally illegitimate”:http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/present/styles.html#edef-STYLE. But, hey, if the pros can occassionally “thumb their noses at the validator”:http://www.stopdesign.com/log/2004/02/05/bebad.html, why can’t I? :) (Okay, okay: Doug was thumbing his nose at a _bug_ in the validator…but, still).

4 thoughts on “On the Radar: All Those Pretty Widgets Edition

  1. Angela

    Haha. That is funny. I gave up my snooze button for Lent one year. Never had a problem again. Unless I was so exhausted I didn’t even hear the alarm go off. So yes, getting enough sleep is pretty basic.

  2. Mike Bond

    I’d love to try this out, but I have a feeling that simply going to sleep at a decent hour might be just as effective.

    My freshman year of college i had a problem where i would set my alarm for 6am so i could get to my 7:30am class. Worked well the first week, but after that … not so much.

    My sophmore year, after I moved out of the dorms, I finally discovered the secret and swear by it to this day.

    1) crack the alarm clock open, and disable the snooze feature. Mine was as simple as unsoldering a wire.

    2) Move the alarm out of arms reach. The further away, and in the most annoying location you can. Mine is clear across my room on my computer desk, under a little ledge. Can’t hit snooze anymore. Can’t turn it off without moving the whole thing, which requires moving the phone, jar of pens, etc …

    By the time i get it turned off, i’ve had to apply some thought. At which point you can start to rationally think about the situation and get into the ‘well, i’m up. might as well shower’

  3. Mike Bond

    Uno is an attempt to cut down on the GUI dissonance you might experience while using a Mac

    Apple needs to pick a theme in leapord and just go with it.

    Windows Vista’s interface/theme (the default glass/aero one) is beautiful. I would put it slighly above apple’s look right now, because THE MAC WINDOWS ARE NOT CONSISTENT.

    drives me nuts.

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