One of the habits we’ve recently caught at Ning is creating widgets – little mini-web-apps that you can embed in your own blog or website. If you’re a fan of CuteOverload you’ll probably have seen the Ning-powered miniature versions of What’s Cuter and CuteCaps.
(I can safely say probably as they’re already all over the web.) They’re not only easy to add to your blog – they’re an instant dash of cuteness; perfect for those “my website just doesn’t have enough kittens” moments.
One of the reasons we’ve been shouting about our cool new REST API recently is that it makes it even easier to build these kinds of widgets. As an example, check out these new demo widgets – the Wishlist widget, for example, can be embedded in your own site just by pasting four lines of HTML. Even better, you can point it at any clone of Wishlist, such as Thanksgiving, Cinecrap, Snakes On A Plane or a clone that you’ve created yourself. If you’re not sure how to do it, don’t fret – just watch this three-minute video in which I demonstrate and explain it in my comforting, slightly gravelly English tones.
If, on the other hand, you’re a web-developer type who’s so over copying and pasting someone else’s widget code and want to create some of your own, stay tuned! In an upcoming entry I’ll explain how we made these widgets, and what you need to code your own.