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This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies. Posted in: Widget Central

Single or Multipurpose Gadgets?

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cripen



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 26
Location: UK

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Hi everyone. I've been avidly ready these forums over the past few days, and am really liking this place so far. One thing that concerns me about Dashboard Gadgets is the people planning on making a gadget with like 10 different tasks!

The whole point of a gadget as I see it, is to perform one task, and perform it well.

For instance with these dictionary/thesuarus gadgets coming out soon, I sure hope they don't also search 10 other sites. I would much prefer have one dictionary gadget, and one thesurus gadget. That way, when I want to search for a word, I don't have to go fiddling with settings.

And while I'm posting, I have a gadget request: a language translator. On the front you simply type some text and hit 'translate'. On the back are the settings for which language from and to. It should remember my settings, since 99% of the time I want to translate from and to the same languages. Is it possible to make a gadget like this using Babelfish?

And what do you think? Gadgets are good if they do lots of functions, or not many functions?
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spauldingg



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 45

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Note: I'm a designer interested in User Interface, not a coder, but I think you are right about multifunction gadgets, but I also believe the functions can be a bit more broad, ie: a "word usage" gadget would be fine to combine thesaurus, dictionary and translation all in one, but don't try to incorporate a chat function in it, too. I have designed a "word usage" gadget interface that does all this with a sensible interface here: http://www.designasaur.com/gadgets/

After I finished it, it struck me that, hey, could the dictionary be on one side, and the thesaurus on the other? Like I said, I don't code much and I don't have Tiger, so I don't know if the flip side can be used for any thing other than Prefs...
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Chris



Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 344
Location: Durham, UK

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

could the dictionary be on one side, and the thesaurus on the other?
Now that's an idea I like. However, I'm not sure if that would be confusing, since almost all other gadgets will have preferences on the back - so it might confuse users initially. I'll post a working mock up of that idea soon (if I remember to...)
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spauldingg



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 45

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Yeah, I was thinking if the Dictionary is showing and the thesaurus button is clicked, it would just flip over, giving the user simple, logical, obvious feedback. Also, if the definition and synonymns loaded on both sides at once that would be cool, so the user doesn't need to search twice. Similar to my design where the dictionary and thesaurus buttons toggle between each for the same word.
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spauldingg



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 45

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Oh, the other thought I had is to have the front of a gadget be where you put input, search terms, etc, clicking the go button both starts the search and flips it over to display results.

But where are the prefs? Well any gadget shouldn't have many prefs, so they could just be little buttons, dropdowns, etc, at the bottom or...

Can gadgets use drawers?
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dev_nut



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 40
Location: UK

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Can gadgets use drawers?

I'll leave the rest for others to answer, but I would really find drawers inside gadgets to be a terrible idea, personally. Drawers are already cluttering up full windows, I would hate to have a drawer on a gadget even moreso!
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spauldingg



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 45

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

I was just asking, but I agree, drawers would be awkward on a gadget, I think small clearly marked buttons for prefs would be best on a double sided gadget.
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wrx_13



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 27
Location: United States of America

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Yeah, I was thinking if the Dictionary is showing and the thesaurus button is clicked, it would just flip over, giving the user simple, logical, obvious feedback. Also, if the definition and synonymns loaded on both sides at once that would be cool, so the user doesn't need to search twice. Similar to my design where the dictionary and thesaurus buttons toggle between each for the same word.

Now this I like the sound of. However if there is a thesaurus on one side, and dictionary on the other, I really don't think it should even have options! Nope. Just dictionary.cmo and thesaurus.com, with a search button, and a way to flip.

For people that want lots of options, someone else can make their own 'full featured' (well sort of) thesaurus or dictionary gadget.
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spauldingg



Joined: 27 Mar 2005
Posts: 45

Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 - 10:44 pm    Post subject: Imported from The Dashboader Reply with quote

Yes, Simple is better, simplest is best. It's just fun to throw around concepts that could be used later, down the line for other gadgets.
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