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Widgets and Snippets

Tomorrow night some of the greatest minds in business and technology (and yours truly) will be talking about widgets. David Beisel (who just announced a move to Venrock) will preside. I have to admit that I’m old school and have been loathe to use widgets. I’m even not really comfortable with snippets, but do use them because the benefit is too great.

For those who don’t think web page structure is “wicked dope”: Widgets are little boxes on a web page that do things – calculators, Flickr photo slideshows, audio players, etc.

Snippets are chunks of web page code that you can’t see but they do things behind the scenes. Most common is a few lines of code that many add to their pages so that Google can give them site analytics.

I still fear the dark side, an both snippets and widgets are passing your site traffic data on to the party that provides the widget or snippet. Being raised in the age of dial-up there was also the issue of having to wait for a page to load until someone else’s snippet or whatever downloads. Broadband has made this no longer an serious counter argument for any but the curmudgeonly (ie – again, yours truly).

On the other side are widgets that can make you money, such as playing Revver videos or running Google Adsense. I’m all for making money.

More on this as I get it. Any favorite widgets or snippets out there? I currently nominate the Salesforce.com / Google Snippet as the greatest of all time (GOAT).