Dashboard widgets on your Mac are a reflection of your busy lives. Mac Dashboard widgets get you the information you want, now. Still, Mac widgets under Mountain Lion are now taking second fiddle to the Mac App Store. Even so, the widgets mentioned here are worth it for those quick-hit kind of moments.

Here, you'll find ten yummy widgets for the Mac. With thousands of widgets available, you should seek your own favorites. Most widgets are free, though donations are often requested.

1

Cocktail

Can you mix an, um, Apple Martini? Kamikaze? Or Piper at the Gates of Dawn? The free Cocktail widget powered by 7.com lets you impress buddies with your mixologist skills. Just type the drink you have in mind. Cocktail's database includes nearly 7,000 drink recipes. Click Feelin Thirsty? for a random selection.

2

Countdown Plus

Steven Chaitoff's simple Countdown Plus widget tells you how much time is remaining until a specified date, such as the newborn's due date, your next vacation, your anniversary, or the day you'll be paroled.

3

Daily Dilbert Widget

If you work in an office environment, you'll love this widget, which delivers Scott Adams' cartoon strip to your Mac every day. The latest seven comic strips are promised at any given time.

4

Mac Tips and Tricks

Mac Tips and Tricks does what its name suggests − it's a springboard to tips on all things Macintosh, from listening to music through multiple speakers via AirPlay to fine-tuning the volume on your computer. Check out the widget for other tricks.

5

Movies

Want to know the flicks playing in the hood? Want to read a synopsis and view trailers to help you decide which to see? That's just what Movies, a simple film fan widget from Apple, lets you do. Apple supplied the widget with OS X. It even lets you purchase tickets (via Fandango). It's one of the widgets that has exhibited cranky behavior of late, so hopefully Apple will provide the, um, direction, it needs. In the meantime, anyone up for Hitchcock?

6

Power Switch

Press (or rather click) this single button in the Dashboard to make something happen on your Mac. What that something is depends on what happens when you click the "i" to configure the widget. You can put the Mac to sleep, log out, restart, or shut down, all after that single click.

You can fine-tune these actions. For example, you can place check marks that will close all Finder windows, empty the trash, eject network volumes, and secure the system. You can have the computer announce all these actions out loud too.

By dragging the slider, you can delay the start before the behavior takes hold, between 0 and 7,000 seconds after you press the button. The button itself will pulsate leading up to the start of the actions you requested.

7

Quote of the Day

"Silence may be as variously shaded as speech." Edith Wharton said that. "A true friend is one soul in two bodies." Aristotle said that. Start your day with the Quote of the Day widget for these and other pearls of wisdom and a photo or illustration of the person who said them.

8

Starry Night Widget

Want to know what you're looking at in the evening sky? This interactive planetarium widget can reveal the answers. Click the "i" and then the Time/Place tab to enter your current whereabouts or some other location.

If you place a check mark in the Now box (assuming that it's not already checked), you'll be able to identify the galactic objects in the immediate sky. But you can also enter another date or hour — well into the future or deep in the past — to see how space appeared or will appear at that time. You can also display star and planet labels, and constellations.

9

Translate

If you need to quickly translate a word or phrase, the aptly named Translate widget provides a handy tool. You can translate words to or from English and Chinese (Simplified or Traditional), Dutch, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.

10

Word of the Day

Improve your vocabulary with this widget, which serves up daily definitions from Merriam-Webster.com, Dictionary.com, UrbanDictionary.com, or any of the other sources that developer Code Driven lets you pick from.