Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 4th Nov 2007 19:24 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces This is the third article in a series on common usability and graphical user interface related terms [part I | part II]. On the internet, and especially in forum discussions like we all have here on OSNews, it is almost certain that in any given discussion, someone will most likely bring up usability and GUI related terms - things like spatial memory, widgets, consistency, Fitts' Law, and more. The aim of this series is to explain these terms, learn something about their origins, and finally rate their importance in the field of usability and (graphical) user interface design. In part III today, we focus on the desk accessory, popularly known as the widget, applet, mini-app, gadget, or whatever the fashionable term is these days.
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"I've not had time yet to fully investigate the Mac OS X API and see which languages have complete (other than the system languages) access to all the features, but it behooves Apple to make as many bindings available as possible for the languages that people actually want to develop in."

From what I have seen, the Mac OS X Dashboard provides some additional HTML elements (canvas for example) as well as some Javascript bindings for parts of the system. In addition there are "Widget Plugins" which can be implemented in Cocoa to provide Javascript bindings to essentially anything. I believe this is how the iTunes Widget works for example.

So I suspect almost anything could be implemented as a Widget, though obviously implementing plugins in Obj-C is a bit beyond anyone but programmers.

Once my WebKit port to Haiku and its associated browser are in good shape, I will probably investigate making a Dashboard/Sidebar like thing for Haiku. I'm not sure how useful it would be, but I imagine it would be fun to implement ;)

But at the rate things are going, I doubt I will get around to that until February/March next year.

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