Dashboard Widgets

I upgraded to Tiger or reasons of vanity and fanboyishness, but also because some app stopped working for some reason. I actually think it was mail.app, and even after reinstalling, I couldn’t get it to work properly. I have no idea what happened. I hear lots of horror stories from people, but have to say that my iBook has been remarkably error-free. Still, stuff happens on all machines, and mine is no exception. So after going Thunderbird for a week or so, I went to the local Apple store and picked up Tiger. I asked the guy at the counter if he’d ever heard of my problem, but he just looked mystifies. Anyhoo, a few hours later, I was back home and had Tiger installed. To be honest, I didn’t quite see what the fuzz was about. I’m not a developer, though I’d like to be. Still, given my problems with simply customizing my wordpress site or slapping up a decent CSS site, the idea of developing proper apps is far from my mind. As for CSS…let me just say the mafia are so prevalent that I’ve gotten shit for using hybrid design, which even Zeldman himself points as fine in that seminal work of his. CSS advocates hate tables, and moreover, they hate hybrid design even more, because it works without insane workarounds. (Who else redesigns sites by sticking a new style sheet in there? Don’t you want to add new functions etc? I know, I know, it can all be done with CSS and tables are the mark of the Devil and blah blah blah. Moving on.)

Aside from this having nothing to do with anything, my point is Dashboard. I sort of understood how Dashboard could be useful, but on the whole, it wasn’t something I used often. I played Space Invaders and Asteroids a lot, though. Searching for widgets can be fun, but after the first time, the Yodaspeak widget, the MST3K widget or the Chuck Norris facts widget lose their appeal. I had one widget that seemed useful, which was the converter widget. Currency, measuring units and most everything was pretty damn handy. Since it’s frickin’ impossible to find the calculator in OSX (well, compared to 9), I had that in there as well.

But overall, it seemed pretty pointless, and Dashboard remained mostly unused. However, a few months ago, I found a few sites detailing the stuff I could do with the computer. I realized there was a bunch of useful functions hidden in the OS, and, shortly thereafter, I made the same realization about Dashboard: it wasn’t all that pointless after all.

I’ve recently found some pretty useful widgets, like WordPressDash, which is what I’m using to type this, Flick’it, which I use to upload photos to Flickr, both dictionary and thesaurus (English AND Norwegian) and so on. Most of the widgets are in fact versions of the extensions I used with Firefox. Since FF uses so much CPU, though, I switched to Camino and use widgets instead. It seems like a good trade. If only Camino could get the WebDeveloper extensions, I’d be a happy camper.

The one thing I miss with my current widgets is maybe a more advanced tagging functions, but it seems like the sort of thing that someone smarter than me will figure out pretty soon…

10.03.2007 • Permalink

Word Jumble

Ever noticed how “nuclear” can be rearranged to spell “unclear”?

I’m sick and in bed and really, really bored. Can you tell?

09.03.2007 • Permalink

It’s long been a staple for US celebs to appear in Japanese ads, hawking whatever needs additional star power, picking up some handy spare change (A mere 3 mill per movie doesn’t go far these days) in the process.

Recently, both Dustin Hoffmann and Goldie Hawn has appeared in clothes ads here in the land of the midnight, etc. It’s sort of weird. I’m used to international ads, and I’m used to awful dubbing (it’s kinda fun to think of Penelope Cruz’ on-and-off English diction being jetted for an overdub that’s even worse.), but these celebs are in…local ads. OK, local as in national, but national is Norwegian, which is a bit like Rhode Island, so…well, you get the idea.

My point is: we don’t have lawyer ads yet, but if we get them, I hope somebody can rope in the Man From U.N.C.L.E. (“Hi, I’m Robert Vaughn. Sacked by vikings? You can sue!”) That would be awesome.

09.03.2007 • Permalink

The New Yorker, that venerable bastion of humility and down-to-earth-ism, has redesigned its website. It looks good, but it also looks like every other site out there. I realize certain formats look better on the web, but damn, the standards mafia is taking a lot of the variety away. Still, it’s an improvement.

It now looks like a cross of the NY Times and the previous version of The Morning News. The current version of The Morning News looks, in my humble opinion, like dogshit. But that might just be me.

09.03.2007 • Permalink

Captain America: Assassinated: The good Cap went out with a bang, killed by a sniper’s bullet. Much rhetoric will be invested in this by both sides, to be sure, but I also noticed we’re talking ish#25. CA’s been an on-and-off title for a while. Could his death – no doubt at the hands of Islamic jihadi forces working in unison with freedom-hating, gun-controlling liberals (alternately the staff at Walter Reed) – possibly be the result of sales that are in the toilet? (Of course, you know the worst thing about comic book deaths: Everybody always stays dead. Forever. Really.)

07.03.2007 • Permalink

…sure is fun to follow. Conservative banshee Ann Coulter recently referred to Democratic presidential candidate (and no-hoper) John Edwards as “a faggot”. True believers point out that it’s a “schoolyard taunt”, meaning “wuss, pussy”, and “you know, really uncool” (Yes, Matthew Shephard was savagely beaten to death for being uncool.), while most try to distance themselves (like total faggots, one presumes). Republican candidates Guiliani and Romney were – in an amazing coincidence – “not in the room” at the time the comments were made, but have both condemned the remarks, sorta, as has straight-as-a-Boa-Constrictor-talkin’ McCain. Guiliani I can actually believe, as he has certain progressive tendencies, but coming from McCain, a man who took a potshot at a 13-year-old Chelsea Clinton, calling her “ugly” to a packed house at a convention once, it rings pretty hollow.

07.03.2007 • Permalink

Thanks to British SF magazine Annsible, for reminding me that Apple Computers once had a model called “Sagan”, in honor of Carl Sagan. It was later renamed “BHA” when Sagan threatened them with a lawsuit. Apple let slip (unofficially) that “BHA” stood for “Butt-Head Astronomer”. What do you know: Sagan sued them over that, too.

07.03.2007 • Permalink