A Dashboard Widget for DirecWay Satellite Users
So I wrote my first Dashboard widget, just to see if I could.
This widget will be extremely useful to anyone who is using a DW7000, as well as a Mac running OS 10.4 Tiger, who needs an easy way to check whether he needs to go use a long stick to knock snow off the dish. It should also work for people with the older and slightly more crappy DW6000, though I’m not sure if the text displayed on that one’s web interface is different enough to break the screen-scraping the widget depends on.
So, basically, this is just for me.
A few thoughts about widget authoring:
It feels really, really weird to not have to do browser-specific testing.
Building a Dashboard widget is basically identical to building a web page, except that you don’t have to include workarounds for the inevitable bugs in IE, you don’t have to test it in FireFox or on a Windows box or worry about degrading gracefully for missing features: if it works in your dashboard, it will work in everyone’s dashboard. Weird. (That said, if by some bizarre set of circumstances you happen to be part of this widget’s target audience and it doesn’t work for you, let me know.)
Widgetarium is a not-bad IDE for Dashboard widget development.
Thank God they didn’t force you to use AppleScript.