As an integral part of the Windows Vista interface, Microsoft has added the Windows Sidebar feature to the Vista desktop. I am not normally one to put extra icons or, in this case, gadgets on my desktop; the cleaner my desktop the better. My desktop in the physical world is quite different — it is a mess, but my Windows desktop is a model of efficiency with as few icons as possible.
So it is with some surprise that I find myself enjoying some of the gadgets you can download for the Vista Windows Sidebar. I even did a How do I... blog post explaining how to download, install, and tweak the options in gadgets, many of which are available for free from the Windows Live Web site.
Some of my favorite gadgets fall into the productivity realm like the calendar and clock gadgets. But I also find myself using the iTunes player to play music on my laptop while I surf the Internet for news, stock tips, and humorous You Tube videos. A few months ago I would have been adamantly opposed to placing extra stuff on my desktop.
So I am curious, are you using the Windows Sidebar feature in Vista? Do you like it? Do you hate it?
Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.