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Mac OS X Leopard: The Missing Manual by David Pogue

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Web Clips: Make Your Own Widgets

You don't have to be satisfied with Apple's 20 widgets or the several thousand that other people have written. Leopard introduces Web clips, a new way to make a Dashboard widget of your own—in about three clicks.

Web clips exploit an inescapable characteristic of widgets: An awful lot of them exist to deliver real-time information from the Web. That's the point of the Ski Report widget, Weather, Stocks, Flight Tracker, ESPN, and so on.

Widgets could, in theory, harbor viruses, so Mac OS X is extremely cautious in downloading them.Top: When you try to download a widget, the Mac asks if you're sure. Middle: After you download a widget and confirm your intention, you meet this test-drive mode for newly downloaded widgets. It's a way to play with new widgets before you actually commit to adding them to your system. Play with the widget, and then click Keep to install it (or Delete, if you think it's evil).Bottom: Not all good things come from Apple. Here's a representative sample of widgets written by other people. From top left: Plasma Tube, Guitar Chords, Chuck Norris Facts, World Radio, and MiniStat 2 (details about your Mac at the moment).

Figure 5-31. Widgets could, in theory, harbor viruses, so Mac OS X is extremely cautious in downloading them. Top: When you try to download a widget, the Mac asks if you're sure. Middle: After you download a widget and confirm your intention, you meet this test-drive mode for newly downloaded widgets. It's a way to play with new widgets before you actually commit to adding them to your system. Play with the widget, and then click Keep to install it (or Delete, if you think it's evil). Bottom: Not all good things come from Apple. Here's a representative sample of widgets written by other people. From top left: Plasma Tube, Guitar Chords, Chuck Norris Facts, World Radio, and MiniStat 2 (details about your Mac at the moment).

But what if your interest isn't skiing, stocks, or sports? What if it's the New York Times front page? Or the bestselling children's books on Amazon? Or the most-viewed video on You Tube?

That's the beauty ...

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