Wednesday, April 11, 2012

More Holiday Gadgets: Valentine's Day!

Today is Valentine's Day. Traditionally, this day of romance is celebrated with chocolate or flowers, lavish dinners out, or even more lavish dinners in. But what if you're still looking for that special someone, or you're miles away from the one you love? Google Desktop to the rescue: Here are a few desktop gadgets you can use to find or celebrate love.
gadget snapshot Crush
By Lahiru Lakmal Priyadarshana

Let a special Google Talk friend know that you have a crush on him or her.
gadget snapshot Cupid's Gadget
By Teodor Filimon
Are you too shy to ask someone out? Do you want to see if he or she likes you, too? Try "like-marking" with Cupid's Gadget!
gadget snapshotFind My Heart
By Lahiru Lakmal Priyadarshana

Give your heart to a Google Talk friend. Your friend wins if it takes five tries or less to find where you hid the heart.
gadget snapshot Kiss Me!
By Kathy Walrath

Decorate your desktop with a kissable, framed picture of your sweetheart — or anyone elre you'd like to kiss. Send your prospective valentine a picture of yourself and a pointer to this gadget, and you're sure to get a kiss! (Virtually, at least.)
gadget snapshot Love is in the Air
By James Yum

Heart-shaped fireworks simulate the graffiti inspired by first love. What could be more romantic?
gadget snapshot Flower Pot
By Google Inc.

If you're too late to order flowers for your honey, try giving virtual flowers instead. You might even try to convince your valentine that electronic flowers are ecologically superior to chemically treated flowers that have been transported hundreds of miles. Good luck with that.

You can find Valentine's Day gadgets and more at our holiday gadgets page. If you feel inspired to create your own holiday gadgets — pi Day, anyone? — visit our Developer Site and be sure to grab the Google Desktop SDK.

Happy Valentine's Day from the Google Desktop Team!

The New Sidebar and Gadgets

With the dramatically increasing amount of content out there, you need better ways to find relevant information, whether searching your computer or reading the latest headlines in sidebar. How could we improve the way you stay up-to-date with sidebar and gadgets? How could we make it even easier to search files and find that lost book report, web page, or recipe? After many months, we are pleased to release the Google Desktop 5 Beta application, featuring a new sidebar and redesigned Gadgets.

The sidebar has a completely new look and feel. It samples the color of your wallpaper and fades in the sampled color so that it fits seamlessly onto your desktop. Some of our gadgets have been redesigned so that they are easy to tell apart, easy to read, and easy on the eyes. More differentiated gadgets allow for faster scanning of information through the sidebar. And we've created a new dialog for adding gadgets so it's easier and faster than ever to find the right gadgets for you.

In addition, we have improved two other key features of Google Desktop:
  • Desktop Search - Ever searched your computer and seen a row of results that looked almost identical - so you had to open file after file until you found the right one? Now there is a better way: preview search results from within Google Desktop. Don't wait for an entire application to load, just click "Preview" and find the information you want right away. Finding the right file has never been easier!
  • Security - We take your security extremely seriously and have added new features to help make your search experience safer. Whether you’re clicking on links from documents, IMs and email or browsing the web, if we have information that the site you're visiting might be trying to steal your personal information or install malicious software on your computer, we'll give you a warning first so you can decide if you want to use the site.
You can never save enough time looking for information. Find out more about Google Desktop.

Desktop goes cross platform

Google Desktop is hitting a milestone today: we're going cross platform! Google Desktop for the Mac (beta) is now available. We know that whether you use a PC or a Mac, a significant amount of personal content lives on the web and also on your computer. We're committed to helping you search all of that information.

Like the Windows version, Google Desktop for the Mac makes searching your desktop and the web faster, easier, and more comprehensive, enhances the desktop search experience with the Quick Search Box, and leverages Google technology to deliver speed and usability. It works with both PowerPC and Intel machines with Mac OS X 10.4+ and is compatible with Safari, Firefox, and Camino browsers. For this version, we focused on searching the desktop with speed, ease of use, relevance, and comprehensiveness. It does not have sidebar and gadgets, though we do plan to make Google Gadgets available on the Mac in the future. To find out more, read this post on our Mac Blog.

We look forward to adding more features and further improving performance and usability in the near future.