Thursday, March 7, 2013

Welcome

UPADTE: You can now download the very early test version from here...

Looking for a replacement for iGoogle?

Many people's favorite startpage is currently a Google product titled iGoogle. I use iGoogle heavily every single day and I'm certainly not looking forward to November when Google has announced that they will retire the site. I've been looking at the alternatives, but I've not yet found a solution that fits my needs. I've been looking at:

uStart.com
Protopage
Myfav.es
Netvibes
Allmyfaves

So, I decided to start a project of my own which fit my personal needs. This got me thinking that perhaps other iGoogle users might be interested in this too.

This is NOT a mockup, this is a screenshot!

I'm currently working on a solution and this is, so far, my humble goals:

  • A selfhosted solution on my own domain (like www.BobsStartPage.com).
  • Accessable from anywhere without the need for a special browser or operative system.
  • No ads!
  • Free and open-source code for everyone to use, modify and share.

How will this work?

The project is based on Wordpress. Wordpress is a open-source blogging platform and might seem like an odd choice at first. I believe that the friendly UI, extensive documentation and huge availability of widgets is just a few of the many positives.
I've created a basic theme that is easily installed. Afterwards you have all the widgets (about 3.400) for Wordpress available to you and of course you can code your own with a bit of PHP.
It is of course obvious that there must support for Google Gadgets too.

Want to try it?

Woah, hold your horses fella! There's not a lot to try just yet, but hopefully there will be by the time November is here. As you can see on the right side of this page, even the name is still missing (remember to cast your vote). Keep in mind that I'm merely a hobbyist developer myself, and so if you want to contribute, in anyway possible, PLEASE don't hesitate to get in touch!
I do have some working code (see the screenshot above), but there's a massive list of things to do and fix. Three, for me, essential features are currently missing:
  • Gmail support! I've already looked into this and I can read the inbox emails with IMAP, but unfortunately my current webhost doesn't support that, so I can't test the code.
  • Facebook intergration! There's already a lot of WP plugins for FB - must investigate if there's something useful.
  • Security! The security has a high priority and must be thoroughly tested. 

Ideas, suggestions or just plain feedback is recived with open arms in the comments below :-D

//MadsRH

18 comments:

  1. The screenshot looks good. My biggest complaint with the alternatives out there is that I can't get any of them to match the looks of igoogle, which I love. Yours is getting there. I do need an interactive link to Gmail too. I really would like to be able to read and delete,etc. mails from the home screen. I think only igoogle allows you to do that at the moment.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Igoogle is nice and simple, but perhaps also a bit outdated. I actually like the look of the Windows 8 homescreen and that design might also be possible to 'recreate', but for now the plan is Igoogle as we know it. Maybe down the road I could add an option to switch between the two themes.

      I'm affraid you're right about Gmail.

      Delete
  2. I also like the screenshot. I also wish it could have a background (personally, I like the fractals) but it's not a big deal. Just to have a similar replacement would be awesome. This one looks really good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can add a background image or simply change the color and even add a header. It just uses the default WP settings.

      Delete
  3. Help save igoogle by signing this petition: http://change.org/petitions/google-don-t-kill-igoogle (if you're also interested in saving Google Reader, sign here: http://change.org/petitions/google-keep-google-reader-running) please pass this along! The iGoogle petition is nowhere close to being complete so please sign and share with friends!

    ReplyDelete
  4. igHome.com is a very close replacement for iGoogle, and it includes a Gmail gadget.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Replies
    1. Work in progress! A download will be available very soon, but without any custom widgets.

      Delete
  6. Nice development.
    I have developed Alternative of iGoogle with Wonderful and informative widgets homepage

    www.igoogle4u.com

    Plz support me and spread it with ur friends too...

    ReplyDelete
  7. There is also alternative developed right now. You can find it on https://www.facebook.com/pages/igooglereplacecom/567154179985163 :) We are opened to discuss about what you want in your new homepage. Just like us and write your wish on FB ;)

    ReplyDelete
  8. A replacement is nice, but if you want a real Upgrade that add value to your startpage, I warmly recommend to everyone, to try www.startific.com

    It’s an upgrade from so many point of views!

    ReplyDelete
  9. all new my.yahoo.com is the perfect alternative for igoogle.

    https://my.yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. This is really interesting, lovely and beautiful blog about online Gmail technical support. So thanks a lot for sharing needful information........!!!

    get Gmail Technical Support,Please visit the link.

    Thankyou
    Lacy Brown

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi! It is nice to have so many alternatives out there, particularly now that the closing of iGoogle is approaching.

    After testing some options, right now I am sticking to http://startme.com because it has a very simple design, it's easy to use and allowed me to import/export from iGoogle, browsers and RSS readers.

    It is good to have so many alternatives for the different tastes that we all have :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I use a personnal theme here it is
    http://i.shaza.fr/

    ReplyDelete
  13. As many igoogle users don't have websites have you considered promoting this concept for local install? I've been interested for a while now in exploring wordpress as a complete off and online CMS and social platform and would aver your igoogle replacement concept seems a very good place to start...

    ReplyDelete