About two weeks ago I wrote about Kiva, a cool website that allows people to make microloans. Almost one month ago they had started a developer site, including an easy to use API to access the data (loans, borrowers, lenders, etc).
I couldn’t resist the temptation to have a look at the documentation and start thinking about some application to use it. Soon after I started reading I came up with the idea of writing an Opera widget. There were a couple of reasons for that:
I had never written a widget, so it sounded like a good excuse to learn how to write them.
A widget in http://widgets.opera.com had more possibilities of actually being used than a random pet project of mine lying in some obscure repository of some obscure version control system (well, actually I ended up using Git for it, so it’s not that obscure in some sense; but you get the point).
Finally, for Git, I had a look at the screencasts hosted in GitCasts. I already new some basic Git things, but I think I started to feel more comfortable with it after watching a couple of those videos. Still, too many references to the obscure objects and SHA names and whatever, but clear enough to understand your way around it.
In short, I have to say that creating the widget was easy enough, and it was lots of fun to write it. I had some frustrations debugging it, but things worked fairly well in general. When I finished it, I uploaded to widgets.opera.com and after a couple of days it was already approved and public for everyone.