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Monday, July 23, 2007 « Back to the Press Room
Business_Week_Online

The Wizards of Widgets

You may not know it yet, but you've got Web widgets. Take a look at some of the most popular ones and the wiseguys who cultivated them.

What's a widget? It's the new form of self-expression on the Web-and it's changing the way Web surfers do everything from sharing vacation photos to recommending movies and making money from their Web pages. Want to tell your friends what movies you're renting? There's a widget for that. Want to decorate your page with an amusing TV clip? There's a widget for that too.

Widgets also represent a sea change in software development. Thanks to the explosion of social networks, blogs and personal pages, these software modules can grow more quickly and cheaply than ever before, giving the smallest developer a chance to squat on some prime digital real estate. Come view our guided tour of some of the most popular widgets in different categories and the creative wizards behind them...

Fun in Advertising
Wizard: Haroon Mokhtarzada, 27
Company: Freewebs

Mokhtarzada started Freewebs, a Web site hosting and creation service, with his brother, Zeki, in 2001. The company began creating widgets to give their Web page owners more tools to express themselves on their personal sites. Now they also create marketing widgets for big brand advertisers such as Reebok, Paramount Pictures, and Cingular. Users are willing to put the ads on their sites because they often include interactive or fun items. For example, the Reebok widget let users customize a sneaker and have it fight other sneakers.

Original Article URL: http://images.businessweek.com/ss/07/07/0712_widgets/index_01.htm