Directory of home page widgets

Today was a good day. The presents were great and the food was wonderful. Several of us got together and gave a computer to my in-laws, which meant that I spent some time setting up the computer. By chance, we happened to be talking about the Google personalized homepage, so I gave them a demo. They really liked it.

Now I’ve got somewhere new to point them. Maybe it’s because of the holidays, but Google hasn’t updated its Google widgets directory in a few days. A couple sites have sprung up to fill the gap: Google Modules, by Philipp Lenssen and Alex Ksikes, seems to have the most widgets right now and the site includes an RSS feed. Meanwhile widQ.com has fewer widgets listed, but has them categorized and you can page through all the widgets.

Earlier today I only saw 5-6 widgets in the official Google directory. Looks like they just added another 5-6. Cool.

Update: There’s now a Matt Cutts module. That is just wrong in so many ways. ;)

34 Responses to Directory of home page widgets (Leave a comment)

  1. Harith

    Good morning Matt

    “Several of us got together and gave a computer to my in-laws”.

    GREAT! so now your in-laws will be able to send BigDaddy feedback too. Smart..very smart :-)

  2. Good Morning

    I thought I was the only sado sitting behind a computer screen most of Christmas day and today, Boxing day… Now why doesn’t Google jusy index my sites, give them all a PR5 and churn me out top of every search engine string… That way I could take Christmas off too !! :o)

    Richard

  3. Several of my relatives got together and got me a toaster once. Ahhhhhhh the joys of growing up in white trash Hell.

    Sounds like you had some fun. Good on ya!

    Semi-related question Matt: I found a resource that would be of use to your readers, and I think the people who built it (I don’t know who they are…they’re over in England) should get some credit in the form of a followable backlink.

    How would I go about getting the link to you so that you can potentially write something up about it?

  4. Harith

    Adam Senour

    Matt has mentioned it once before, as I recall. You post a comment using another user name (not your current name Adam Senour).

    You can leave a comment and say “******don’t approve this one****” if you want your comment not posted on the blog.

  5. heh I know all about give the computer and then give support… its the gift that keeps on giving ;)

    Hopefully you gave them a macintosh

  6. Thanks, Harith. I must have missed that.

  7. Matt

    Adam, I moved your comment back to “Moderated”. You have to post with a different email/name; I’ve already approved you, so posting with your email+name automatically shows up very quickly.

    Anyway, thanks for mentioning the link..

  8. Hi Matt,
    hope you had a great Xmas!
    I was fortunate enough to be reading Newsweek this morning and stumbled across your name in the print, not bad considering i live in Tokyo and my wife got the magazine from the local library.
    To cut my story as short as i can because you are very busy i was hoping you may be able to lead me in the right direction.
    Last year i moved to Japan permanently and decided the best thing to make money from was a webshop selling espresso products and related items, my first job was to find a software package i could use easily and it had to be in English so this ruled out looking locally in Japan, i ended up buying Back To The Beach by “Web Studio” and several automated Seo packages.
    After 7 months building my site i had my wife submit it to all the major search engines in Japan and we are currently recieving a lousy 20~25 hits a day and its driving me crazy
    I am at a loss, apart from signing up for a 5 year help assistance plan from my local server (5 years is the minimum here in Japan!) its crazy
    I cant seen to get this Optization thing under control
    Can you please point me in the correct direction?
    Kindest regards
    Graeme
    (lost in translation)

  9. googulemodules rules! I have 2 of the top 2 modules currently (slang translator and text messages), and it’s sending a lot of traffic to my sites :)

    It’s definitely a great way to increase traffic. I’ll be doing a “used/new car finder” for my company’s website as well. Hope it works for that too.

  10. I was wondering about that, Matt. I noticed all my comments seemed to show up right away (much obliged on that show of respect for my intelligence, by the way).

    From now on, I’ll use one of my alternate emails and post using it and an extension of my name.

    Thanks for moderating it, though.

  11. I must admit I am a bit ‘old-school’ and like the plain-jane google.com page. Personalized? I am getting old. My kids (one already a teen) love to personalize the heck out of everything from http://www.neopets.com (my youngest loves that site) to AIM buddy icons and cell phone ring tones. I just don’t get the point of a cell phone ring tone? It sounds like crap! Give me some nice polk audio speakers and now we talkin’!

  12. Hi Matt,

    Happy holidays.

    It would be a great help to all site owners and content writers for a heads up on how duplicate content affects sites.

    Copying and pasting is absolutely rampant and is, to put i mildly, a bit worrying.

    Please help us out.

    In the meantime, continue to celebrate! Take it easy on the booze – not!

  13. I showed the Google personal home page to some co-workers last week and am now the coolest person in the cube farm. Thanks to Google, my self esteem has been boosted to levels previously thought unattainable.

  14. Elizabeth

    Note: It was recommended to me that a question I’d posted to another resource be posted here, as there would be a greater likelihood of a useful answer.

    http://www.webmasterworld.com/forum30/32568.htm

    Some weeks ago, I became aware that an academic / educational web site had disappeared from Google. Doing a search for sosmath.com returns the “Sorry, no information is available” error message.

    Searching for the domain name in quotes (so one is searching for sites containing the domain name, rather than for the site itself) returns 36,100 hits, the referring pages being universities and other academic sorts of sites.

    Search for other sites containing the name of the site (“SOS Math”) returns 24,000 hits, the referring pages generally being educational sorts of sites.

    In other words, the SOS Math site is well known (and has been for some time) and has many quality in-links.

    I can find nothing on the site that should have warranted its being banned (no “black hat” behavior, for instance) nor is the Google-bot banned in the site’s robots.txt file. I had not noticed any particular changes in the site from, say, six months ago and the present, other than perhaps the inclusion of Google ads.

    I have no affiliation with this site, but, having my own academic site, I would like to figure out what SOS Math did wrong, so I could avoid doing whatever it was that they did wrong.

    Any ideas?

  15. Hi Mr. Cutt. Ive heard about you from NEWSWEEK. I can’t belive you are the famous guy from Google. Merry Xmas from the Philippines.

  16. Harith

    Matt Cutts

    He was last seen at Omaha airport talking to his beloved cat. Long time no post since :-)

    Hope everything well, Matt.

  17. Chris_Y

    VIRUS ALERT – Nasty Windows exploit that exploits a flaw in .WMF files and creates the zero day WMF exploit.

    Any email or pic viewer or browser is susceptible, including THE GOOGLE TOOLBAR.

    Info here: http://www.f-secure.com/weblog/ includes some sites that are infected

    http://isc.sans.org/ gives more details about the exploit

    Now would be a good time to make sure your machine is backed up.

  18. He must be doing actual work….. I think I vaguely remember what that is.

  19. Monnie

    Dear Matt,
    Can you please advise why our site which was in the 2nd page suddenly dropped to > 500. Is it some sort of filter and what is it after?

  20. lilbit

    Hi Matt,

    Just heard, what is this that Google is going to start charging for unlimited API use? Can you shed some light on this. I know this is off topic but wanted to ask you.

    Thanks

    lilbit

  21. Hello Matt,

    Today while browsing my competition website I have found a nice black hat method user:

    http://www.offuhuge.com/v4/

    Check at the bottom. Insane…

  22. Aaron Pratt

    I hope Mr. Cutts posts soon, I have something I am going to demand an answer on. It just has happened too many times and now my new websites are dead in the water!

    Anyone make websites and use WordPress blog software? Anyhoo, I am working to make my websites compliant and noticed that WordPress does not put in meta tags in by default so I figured out a way to do so and did. I also made html sitemaps on each of the sites. GUESS WHAT??? They all are not being found for the phrases they were being found for in Google and Yahoo before I made the changes!!! AND GUESS WHAT LEVEL THEY HAVE BEEN DEGRADED TO??? Freakin’ scraper sites!!! My site on composting is about “COMNPOST and COMPOSTING” NOT misspelled words and low traffic freakin garbage!!!

    What am I to do? Matt? Anyone?

  23. Aaron – on what basis are you saying they have been downgraded? Sounds to me like things other than your wordpress changes probably kicked in ?

  24. Aaron Pratt

    Joe, you know how when you check your stats once or twice a week you find specific “phrases” that you are being found for in Google, Yahoo and MSN? Well I was being found for a few and it was great. Then I added meta data, and a sitemap (not a google sitemap). In just a few days my stats have zeroed out and I am not being found in Google or Yahoo for anything worth much.

    The only other thing that I found is the WordPress does not set an index.html is sets an index.php by default. I made an index.html because in my other blog the .html one shows Google toolbar PR making me believe it prefers .html (even if it is just static)

    What I am trying to do is make WordPress more friendly to the search engines and what I could be doing is setting off all kinds of spammer warnings in the G algorithm (possible?). Am I dreaming?

    I used a tool at SEO Chat that shows “future PR” as they call it and when I made these changes I saw PR zeros in 2 of Google’s data centers for my site. Tried it again on another one and same thing.

    If you do a website should you just make it as compliant as possible then forget about it for a year or more? Am I shooting myself in the foot making changes or is this just normal stuff every webmaster does?

    Extremely frustrating!!

  25. Harith

    Aaron

    There is a theory that modifications of the titles or meta tags of several pages at one time, might trigger a filter which cause the affected pages to be sandboxed.

    You can read about it on this thread of WMW

  26. I think Google needs to have a little switch in Google Sitemaps that when we login we can twitch it on and check boxes to let them know that we are not gaming the system. Adding meta tags to a WordPress blog [check]. Adding ten new articles on “soil” [check]. You want to trust us? Increase sitemap capabilities to notify!! I was foolish to believe that in putting sitemap verification .txt on my sites it would develope a relationship with Google so this stuff wouldn’t happen.

    I am going to go over to google groups and stop annoying Matt with questions he will never be able to answer…good bye!

  27. Dave

    Aaron, it sounds to me like your site pages probably would have fallen anyway. I often have pages rank great for a few days only to slip back to page 5 or beyond.

    RE: “I used a tool at SEO Chat that shows “future PR” as they call it and when I made these changes I saw PR zeros in 2 of Google’s data centers for my site. Tried it again on another one and same thing.”

    No, you used a tool the CLAIMS to show future PR. Fact is nobody but a select group in Google know what the TRUE PR of any given page is at at any given time.

    If you think about it, there are only 10-20 that can claim satisfaction with their Google SERP position for any given phrase. The other 10,000 + are always unhappy and always sceam that the SERP’s are flawed!

    IMO, Matt would be totally immune to that scream now.

  28. Dave, I agree that not everyone can be in the top 20, but when you do a website focused on a certain subject and Google is only using you for images after 5 months it gets a little annoying. It also gets little annoying not knowing what might trigger a negative response. I also admit to being a complete idiot in choosing WordPress blog software to try to make a compliant website, it is a mess, no meta tags, no index.html and is the software of choice for splogs.

    Oh well, my buzzbox blog is showing no signs of “sandbox” because it is downright hyper. Don’t know how one could ever create such a stir about recycling food scraps! Oh well…

  29. Sorry, I have no good advice Aaron. It sounds like a new site and therefore all kinds of things could be at work. For example if it started strong but then did not get any link development after several months one would expect G to lower the ranking.

    I think your idea of enhancing sitemaps is a very good one. Legitimate sites are happy to give details, spammers and scrapers are not. it’s an easy and scalable way to separate the wheat from the chaff and then (hopefully) offer info to sites that are downranked for technical reasons (bad robots.txt, etc).

  30. Depending on how many changes you made, google could think it’s a new site.

    I changed the format and design of one of my sites recently and pagerank dissapeared too. It’s a whole new site though, with a new look and a new concept, so I assume it will take time for it to come back.

    As for wordpress, it’s the devil. Writing a basic CMS isn’t that hard, and you’re assured you have something unique. When I write mine, i store the page specific meta tags in the database with the page. That way each article can have it’s own page and meta tags.

    I’ve also found textpattern to be a nice wordpress replacement. noslang.com/blog if you want an example of it in action.

    IIRC it might even have a wordpress import module.

  31. Matt

    Elizabeth, checking older versions of sosmath.com, I suspect that pages like
    http://www.sosmath.com/payday-loans/payday-loans.html
    http://www.sosmath.com/payday-loans/cash-advances.html

    had very little to do with trigonometry or matrix algebra and more to do with sosmath.com selling pages and links on its sites.

  32. I wanna thank Elizabeth and Matt for helping us clear a true mystery… Indeed I am one of the three creators of SOSMATH… When the site disappeared from Google we were speechless. We had no idea why.. The two pages that Matt is referring to were pure advertising. We had no idea that these form of advertising (which was the first time we tried it) was unacceptable to Google… The sad part is that we had no way of communicating with Google. We tried many many times. In any case one learns from his mistakes… Thanx again.
    Mohamed

  33. It’s definitely a great way to increase traffic. I’ll be doing a “Adobe tutorials/Photoshop tutorials” for my company’s website as well. Hope it works for that too.

  34. yeah you’re totally right !

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