Jon Aquino's Mental Garden

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Sunday, February 04, 2007

Google personalized start page - giving it a second chance

Today I decided to give Google Personalized Home a second look:

I've found that start pages don't seem to be that useful to me - they get in the way of where I want to go. So I usually set my start page to about:blank, or to Google. But on a whim, I decided to try Google's customizable start page. There are dozens (hundreds?) of "gadgets" that you can add to your page - a lot of it is junk that can slow down the page load, and a lot of it you can already get for your feedreader - but I did find some gadgets that might be useful for a start page.

At the top left I have the Interesting Items For You gadget, which is based on my recent searches. There are links about CSS ("Vertical Centering in CSS"), Catholicism ("Vatican: the Holy See"), and ergonomics ("Posture, Movement and Ergonomics"). To the right is the Search History Trends: Last 7 Days gadget. It's kind of neat to be reminded of what I've been searching for recently.

At the bottom left is a World Clock showing times for Victoria where I live, Paris where one of my colleagues lives, and the Philippines where my family is from.

And at the bottom centre is My Real Age which shows your age to three decimal places. It "concentrates the mind wonderfully", as Boswell said of knowing one's mortality.

On the far right is the Weather gadget, showing light rains in Victoria, clear skies in Paris, and a mix of sun and clouds in Palo Alto.

* * *

I'll try this start page and see how it goes. It loads relatively quickly, and is a bit more interesting than the basic Google page - although that has its own elegance.


  • You can give Pageflakes a try. It's a prettier and most useful alternative to Google's implementation.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2/04/2007 7:33 p.m.  

  • Yeah I would like to give Pageflakes a spin sometime - heard good things about it.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 2/04/2007 7:49 p.m.  

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