Widget Configuration, RSS, and Free Text

We’ve been getting so many requests for widgets that we’ve hardly had time to code anything! I bit the bullet and turned off my email long enough to update the interface and provide widgets for the most requested features. Now they’re active and I’ll be turning my email back on, for better or for worse…

Anyway, here’s the scoop on the new stuff in your Sidebar Editor panel. Most widgets are now configurable through a little popup window. Almost all widgets let you change their titles now, so we expect you to come up with a better name for your archives than “Archives.” Really.

The two most exciting widgets are Text and RSS. You can have as many as nine of each of these. The Text widget is composed of a title and some text or HTML. Lots of people wanted to put badges and pictures in their sidebars, and while Flash and Javascript are still filtered out, you have a lot more freedom here than ever before.

My favorite new widget, the RSS widget is really simple (hehe) to use but it’s pretty amazing what you can accomplish with it. It’ll handle RSS, ATOM, and who knows what other syndication formats. I’ve set up a bunch of feeds on my blog to give you some ideas: another personal blog of my own, MC Hammer’s blog (to show that I’m cool), my Flickr feed, Dodgeball so you know where I am hanging out, and a bunch of funnies (in case my dry humor doesn’t flip your switches). It’s a good start but I’m sure I missed the very best ones. It’s up to you to show the world what a feed maniac you are!

The first widget geared toward a specific third-party service is our Del.icio.us widget. There will be more of these appearing over time, including the oft-requested Flickr badges.

What else do you want that can’t be done with the RSS widget? Keep sending feedback and we’ll keep tallying it, day and night.


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Andy Skelton

72 Comments

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  1. Jon

    Very cool! I love the del.icio.us widget. I’m still waiting for Simpla to support customizing the sidebar, though.

    Like

  2. .i dream in red.

    nice!

    Like

  3. karthiksn

    HEy andy very kool and as you said I might have to comewith new nam,es for all the things now

    Like

  4. Stephen

    Probably one of the best updates yet!

    Awesome!

    Like

  5. gichie

    As I’ve suggested with the feedback form, Asides would be good! (matt responded to it too)

    Like

  6. russellreno

    Wonderful stuff.

    I tried pasting my Flickr HTML badge into a text box and it did not work.

    Like

  7. williamparry

    It’s very nice to use.

    It is pretty cool how it autosaves the info in the text widget but I think there needs to be some sort of message saying that it does.

    Like

  8. Ryan B

    Very nice, I noticed that the categories widget is still buggy. By default it is shown with parents and children. But when you move it, the categories become one line.

    Like

  9. catgirls

    Awesome! The RSS widget looks quite useful and the fact that “most widgets are now configurable rocks” as well. Great work.

    =^.^=

    Like

  10. thenaked

    Hemingway doesn’t support these new widgets…..i m so sad…..:~(
    But good jobs any way!!!! u guys are soooo efficient!!!!

    Like

  11. cathartidae

    I tried using the Text Widget to put a quote in my sidebar, but the text came
    back much bigger than the rest of the text elsewhere in the sidebar so it didn’t look very good. Is there a away to fiddle with the HTML of the text?

    Like

  12. Mick

    Love the widget power.

    May I suggest a calendar widget for folks who like that sort of thing?

    Thanks again. I am increasingly impressed with WP.

    Like

  13. linux

    Once again …. awesome … tnx.

    Like

  14. bothack

    I would like a plugin for polls

    Like

  15. K

    Wow, first you got the “recent comments” – but didn’t work with Hemmingway Theme. Then you got RSS feeds configurations, etc – again, it didn’t work with Hemmingway. And now, FLICKR – I’m excited rather afraid it will never work for Hemmingway Theme.

    Like

  16. jmettraux

    Neat ! Keep up the great work !

    Like

  17. Prabhakar Karve

    Great! I like that!!

    Like

  18. Andy

    Mick: Nice work!

    Like

  19. 2012olympiccompetitor

    Love it – but can these be added to older themes such as regulus? I don’t want to change theme particularly, but I’d love this extra functionality.

    Like

  20. Amit

    the RSS widgets don’t handle the non-english unicode text. any idea when this will be fixed?

    Like

  21. kat

    Whoa, good work! It would be great to have this option (as a plugin?) for wordpress.org. Now I am torn between moving to local hosting of wordpress to sticking around seeing how efficient you guys are.

    Awesomeness, people :]

    Like

  22. gringo

    amazing!! great work!! I love it too. thanks!!!!

    Like

  23. judyk

    Another vote for a “calendar” widget in all themes. Thanks.

    Like

  24. varna

    Great! still waiting for the widgets to work on the girl in green theme….and of course the calander archives widget….

    Like

  25. kapeka

    Is there a Plugin for this rss Stuff out there? This is pretty cool.

    Like

  26. Vish

    I’m totally loving this!

    Like

  27. continium

    Completely amazing! The new text widget opens up many possibilities. Great job!

    Like

  28. Michiel

    Maybe an advertisement or Google AdSense widget?

    Like

  29. edina

    yeah, um wordpress is cool and all, but WHY don’t you guys have the custom layouts feature! i want to be able to use my OWN layout! thanks! (because all the other ones suckkk)

    Like

  30. unzelblog

    i love the free text,thank you mr. wordpress admin for this tool

    Like

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  32. onewheel

    Thank YOU! This is one i’ve been waiting for.

    I can’t wait for flickr…

    Like

  33. Honesty

    Absolutely cool widgets !!! WordPress.com really rocks !!!

    But after you tune this up, originally worked “Recent Commnets” widget has changed its layout in my blog. It’s theme-related, but couldn’t it be neat in any theme? That’ll be perfect ! :p

    Can’t wait for “Flickr” widget !!! :PPP

    Like

  34. adam

    Cool. When will they work with Hemingway?

    Like

  35. greenlightsabers

    Great work, but I’ve noticed when I rename the “Catergories” title, it’ll go back to its default name.

    Like

  36. redforkhippie

    Thank you. The only thing I didn’t like about Toni was that I couldn’t include my tagline. Thanks for adding the text widget. It resolves the issue nicely.

    Like

  37. bullish1974

    i’m falling in love with the free text widget and the way it added flavor to my blog. thanks, guys. kudos!

    Like

  38. garagolo

    It’s possible a widget with the Top Posts?

    Like

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  40. Livia

    Awesome! What a pity I cant use them on my lovely Regulus template… :(

    Like

  41. fullyfluffy

    I haven’t been able to get RSS feeds to work “Unknown Feed” messages. Could anyone post an example URL that they’ve used and got to work in the RSS widget?

    Like

  42. Destiny

    post it in the forums, under rss tag

    lovely widgets by the way, very cool, love the text widgets with html capabilities!

    Like

  43. taraden

    Thanks guys! I also tried to place my flickr badge into the text widget but it did not work as well, will we have to wait for the Flickr widget to do that?

    Like

  44. мøłäflε×

    Amazing! Would be nice to edit the Rss titles!

    Would like a pool widget to!!!

    keep up the good work!

    Like

  45. cellbreakers

    Hi, I cannot seem to add HTML or javascript to the sidebar. How can I do this?

    Like

  46. Lee Kelleher

    Excellent work Andy… very impressive! I’ve been looking forward to this for a while now, and it looks like its everything we wanted! Thanks.

    Like

  47. sito

    Very neat! Thanks for all the good work!! And…. +1 vote from me for the Flickr widget! :)

    Like

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  49. craigsmitham

    How do I get these widgets? I host my own wordpress installation, is there a plugin I need to install or is it just certain themes?

    Like

  50. Mete

    Calendar, pretty please!

    (I admit that I’m a bit of a geek, but I have NO clue what that RSS stuff is used for. And I’m pretty sure none of my friends or readers know either. I blog because of the writing part, not because of the crazy techie stuff. I’m guessing I’m in a minority here.)

    Like

  51. andalee

    I love the fact that I don’t have to learn any more code to tweak my sidebar. A blog shouldn’t be that elitist. Thanks!

    Like

  52. lucio

    Way to go with the widgets… It is really cool to have all this customization.

    Like

  53. Alex

    It seems RSS widget doesn’t support UTF-8 encoded feeds – I see a garbage instead of non-english characters.

    Like

  54. Alex

    I think it is a good idea to have del.icio.us small icon in bookmarks widget. Or it may be even better to allow users attach their custom icons to every widget header (may be just to allow HTML in headers).

    Like

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  56. Stahn

    You should add the option to edit all the titles of the Widgets, this way we are a step closer to localization.

    For example, in my blog I’d wanted to translate Recent Posts, at least the other ones have been updated.

    Like

  57. unixnotes

    Is adSense widget in the works?

    Like

  58. Pamela

    I added the Flickr Zeitgeist code into to my sidebar last night and it worked fine in Firefox but then when I came into work today and checked my page it is not displaying in IE, the code is still there. I’m very new to all of this.

    Like

  59. hotstufffiles

    I would quite like the option for people to be able to specify the exact colour that users wish to use for backgrounds and text.

    For example with Hemingway, I would love to change the black to a dark grey.

    Like

  60. swartzonmedia

    good deal

    Like

  61. cariduit

    nice and easy to use even for a newbie like me. is there a widget that we can put pictures so that everyone can see?

    Like

  62. Chrono Tron - 100%

    Which theme would you like Chrono Tron to use?

    WordPress.com Blog Hosting is just becoming better and better by the day. With tons of new features (like Widgets), I’ve really stopped thinking of shifting over to a hosted blog. The only thing that I’d like here is some Javascript and dom…

    Like

  63. പെരിങ?ങോടന??

    RSS widget is cool, but I can not rename its Title, same goes for Recent Posts widget.

    Like

  64. Ute & Christian

    The sidebareditorthing is cool! What about an option to put a picture in the sidebar?

    Like

  65. T. Longren

    WordPress Widget Plugin

    Want to change your WordPress sidebar but don’t wanna edit any code? The WordPress Widgets Plugin is just what you’re looking for.
    It made it’s debut on WordPress.com a few months ago and is now being released for public consumption….

    Like

  66. Proto

    Hi, any chance of integrating the Google Reader Feeds with WordPress? Or is it already available? I would love to share my starred items with my buddies. Thanks.

    Like

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  69. zhaol

    the widgets are very cool. are they available to other templates than just the default?

    Like

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  72. iweenie

    can I embed an AD banner on my RSS widget?

    Like

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