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Give Windows Vista the Millennium Group treatment with our new Vista Sidebar Gadget


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  • Elders (Moderators)
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Earlier this week we published the first in what will hopefully become a series of Millennium themed gadgets for Windows Vista. All versions of Windows Vista feature a Sidebar facility which allows small programs (gadgets, sometimes known as widgets) to run (or be dragged onto the desktop). As far as we know this is the first available gadget for Vista inspired by Chris Carter's Millennium TV series.

MLM Ouroborus Countdown is gadget which you can install on Windows Vista's Sidebar, or simply drag and drop it from your sidebar to your desktop. The gadget resembles the familiar Millennium Group welcome log-in screen as seen in the television series and used by Millennium Group members. It features a golden Ouroborus and automatically displays your name and the number of days remaining. Rather than simply displaying the message, "Welcome Frank", the gadget is more personalised and instead displays the name of the current Windows Vista user.

NB. The Gadget uses a Windows system value to determine the user's name that comes from the name of the User's folder, that contains their application settings, My Pictures Documents etc. Unfortunately, some computers have Windows pre-installed with a generic user name like User or Owner, instead of it asking for your own personal name when you use the computer for the first time. There isn't much you can do about that for now until the next release of the gadgets which allows full name customisation.


MLM Ouroborus Countdown v1.0 features:

  • Millennium Group Ouroborus
  • Personalised - Automatically welcomes the current logged in user!
  • Countdown - Displays the current number of days until December 21st, 2012 (the forthcoming Apocalypse?).
  • Easily customisable countdown date (see instructions).
  • Site Link - Clicking the Ouroborus takes you to our main website at millennium-thisiswhoweare.net
  • Drag and drop from your sidebar to your desktop


We hope you enjoy this creation and we look forward to bringing you a series of gadgets featuring your favourite characters from Millennium.

Visit the Millennium inspired Windows Vista Sidebar Gadgets category in our forum's download manger to find the first Millennium gadget.
Guests (non-registered forum members) are welcome to download the gadget but registered members can rate and add comments to the downloads as well as having access to additional downloads and forums.

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I was just wondering if that gadget will work with programs like Yahoo widgets.

I use Windows XP and would love to have a widget like that for my desktop.

I don't want anyone to tell me if a character I play is a good or bad guy. Hopefully the actions of the character will define him without having to wear a white hat or a black hat. Bad and good things are done by all people in my experience. - Terry O`Quinn

Response to a question I asked on The Fuselage forum about whether or not he was told if Peter Watts was good or bad.

The Terry O`Quinn Fansite

MP Designs art and writing

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  • Elders (Admins)

Hi Melissa,

Thanks for your reply and especially for the inspiration to look into this!

There's good and bad news but bear with me. Firstly the bad, I don't think this gadget being a Vista gadget will work on Yahoo's widget without conversion.

I looked briefly into the Yahoo Widget's site and I think it could be converted but I'd have to start using them and learn how their widgets work which I don't really have the time to do at the moment.

However, here's the good news. There is a simple way to get the Vista Sidebar working on Windows XP so you can use these gadgets!

After something like 2 hours I found a way to get the Vista Sidebar running on Windows XP Service Pack 3 and unlike other solutions, this one allows you to run Vista gadgets to it and they seem to work fine. I just tried it on my son's Windows XP based computer and it worked immediately, and he doesn't have Internet Explorer 7 installed yet, just Service Pack 3. It also comes with a good range of other pre-installed gadgets too.

Here's a screen shot showing the Ouro gadget working on the Windows XP desktop (undocked from the sidebar).

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Here's another showing it working on Windows XP whilst docked on the sidebar.

post-1-1226490954_thumb.jpg

Once installed, I downloaded the Millennium Vista Gadget from our Downloads section and just like in Vista, it opened in the Sidebar Gadgets Gallery where I was able to add it straight to the Sidebar.

Its all possible thanks to the wonderful Alky XP Sidebar and the kindness of admin SFKilla at The Hobby Lounge, purveyors of the best technical Vista Gadgets around. SFKilla has kindly updated Alky Bar to work with Windows XP Service Pack 2 and 3 and provided a simple download package with simple instructions that really do work.

You can find the pinned tutorial here with a link to the downloadable 21MB installation file.

You'll need Winrar installed to unrar (unzip) the file, if you haven't got it already, download it a free trial from here.

Install Alky XP (I didn't bother entering a Vista serial number and it worked fine), copy the fonts over, then install the Sidebar and reboot your computer as described. When you reboot you'll find the Sidebar up and running, you're ready to go.

Then download and add the Millennium gadget. If you need further help with this, I'll help best I can or feel free to join the Hobby Lounge Forum.

I'm really excited about this because it means many more Windows users now being able to enjoy these and other gadgets. Don't forget to let us know how you get on!

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  • Elders (Admins)

Cool! Thanks for the confirmation! :wiggle:

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  • Elders (Admins)

Our second gadget is now available (also posted in the Team Blog)!

Frank_v1.0.jpg

Today, we launch the second in what will will become a series of Millennium inspired gadgets for the Windows Sidebar. This time the Millennium Group's criminal profiler Frank Black arrives to welcome you to your desktop and in traditional Millennium style, lets you know how many days are remaining.

As recently discovered, although these gadgets are designed to work for Windows Vista, you can now also get them and 100's more gadgets working on Windows XP, so there's no need to feel left behind if you haven't yet taken the plunge for Microsoft's latest operating system. If you are still using XP, all you need is to do is install Alky Sidebar on XP first, and then download your choice of our Millennium themed gadgets.

View our Millennium styled gadgets.

We hope you like these new downloads, please let us know.

  • Thank you for not contributing to the spread of fake or inaccurate content, speculation or false information especially in relation to current worldwide health events.
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Would it be considered greedy to have them both?

These are great Graham, a lovely addition to any desktop. I have no idea what goes into the making of such things, coding I guess so that's me out, but I have an idea for a gadget if anyone is interested. It would be great to have a 'quotes' gadget that intermittently displayed a different character and a notable line from the series. Y'know the type of thing, Frank: I'm not depressed I'm quiet, Lucy: My love is blue - that kinda thing.

If you haven't downloaded one of these you really should, at least you know how long we have left (1496 days if anyone is interested.)

Eth

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  • Elders (Admins)

Thanks Eth, glad you like them!

I reckon you could create some great looking gadgets, and maybe we should get our heads together! I was going to ask for some help in finding some really good character images of Lucy, Peter, Bletch and co.

They're are actually web pages, I was amazed when I found out. They actually run in Internet Explorer windows, but without the actual window border itself that's called the Chrome. Also, because they are running in one browser as it were, you don't have to worry about getting things to look okay in different browsers, unlike true web pages. I followed some tutorials and used some code for the countdown that I used to have on the homepage of MDUK. Down the road, I'd like to incorporate all the different characters into one gadget, so you simply choose your background from the gadgets own settings.

The random quote idea is a great one! Perhaps we could come up with something, do you have an idea for how you would like it to look?

Also, if people would prefer to have the button link direct to TIWWA instead of M-TIWWA, I can change that.

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Hi Graham,

We certainly should get our heads together on something, it would be a blast.

Firstly, I actually like the fact that it links to M-TIWWA, I must visit there two or three times, at least, daily for one thing or another so it's great to have a permanent and easily accessible link. My bookmarks list is chock full of stuff and the gadget allows me to get there without causing any eye strain searching.

As for a quotations gadget, I've been thinking it over and I think two ideas could be combined to make something 'cool'. I was blown away by some recent artwork showcased at X-Files News and though I doubt I could produce something that accomplished, I thought how cool it would be to do a series of similar pieces based on MM episodes. I then thought , if the pieces were small and tidy enough, they could be adapted to fit the gadget: a series of art pieces based on episodes with a notable quote from the episode it is based on.

If that's too fussy an idea maybe, and I guess the size might be a contributing factor as I would have to create something no bigger than your own gadget, I could come up with a paired down concept. Actually, I ought to play around in Photoshop and get back with a 'sample' piece to be honest. A picture speaks a thousand words after all.

Eth

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style5,Little-spc-Roedecker.png

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  • Elders (Admins)

Sounds really good Mark, size is indeed the limiting factor. Width on the sidebar is limited to 130px wide and height is not not limited but you can't make them too big and leave no room for other gadgets on the bar. I still need to work out how to make the gadgets larger when you drag them off the side bar like some other gadgets do, so that may help. We can discuss options in the staff forums if you like.

  • Thank you for not contributing to the spread of fake or inaccurate content, speculation or false information especially in relation to current worldwide health events.
  • Need help? For technical related issues, please use our Support Forum.
  • To report spam or inappropriate content, please use the Report option which flags all community Elders and autohides the content if multiple reports are received before site staff can respond directly.
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