Widgets are small programs that are displayed as small windows on the desktop from where they can be used. The main idea is to provide the user of the system with direct information about things of interest. Widgets can be loosely sorted into the following categories:
To add widgets to your desktop, you need to either use the Windows Sidebar, if supported by your version of the operating system, or a third party solution like Yahoo's Widget Engine.If you have selected Yahoo's solution, you are free to select widgets from a selection of thousands. Since it takes quite some time to go through all the widgets manually, I decided to post a top 10 list of widgets that you may find useful. Those are widgets that I find useful. It is still recommended to browse the directory list of widgets as well.
Displays a list of various RSS feeds from digg.com.
What can I say, Sudoku is lots of fun and this Widget delivers it right to my desktop.
Displays lots of useful system information such as disk, cpu and memory usage, battery life, wifi signal and more.
Shortcuts, all sorted in this nice little widget. Never again a cluttered desktop..
Displays your google adsense income.
Simple one liner, add a search term, without opening a browser first.
Add tasks and notes to this widget.
Explore the 500 most interesting photos of the day at flickr.
Better than the Calculator that comes with Windows.
Just enter a word and if it is not know it suggests words.
Update: As of April 11, 2012 Yahoo's Desktop Widgets Gallery website has been discontinued. While existing widgets may continue to work, it is no longer possible to download widgets from the site.
Update 2: If you are looking for an alternative, try Rainmeter. It is a desktop customization tool that supports widgets among other things.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.