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NE developer's Windows gadget takes off

Date 27 Mar 2007

A local software developer has seen his latest Windows Vista creation enjoy a great deal of success. Ross Dargan, Software Developer and Consultant at Durham based business and IT consultants Waterstons, has coded a new sidebar gadget for Microsoft’s latest operating system, and has seen over 22,000 downloads for the gadget since January 2007.

The sidebar sits at the top right hand corner of the Vista desktop and allows users to search Google without having to open a web browser. Once the user enters a search term a browser automatically opens displaying the results of the search. The sidebar gadget “Google Searcher” is referenced from Ross’ blog and is downloadable from, an online community hosted by Microsoft for software developers to upload and share pieces of code.

Clare Henderson, Human Resources Manager at Waterstons, said “We actively encourage staff to experiment with new technologies and we reward innovation and performance internally. It’s great that in addition to this Ross is receiving such recognition from his peers. “We have a few guidelines to ensure we protect client confidentiality (and our intellectual property) but beyond that our staff are trusted completely in their use of blogs and forums."

As well as featuring new technologies, Ross uses his blog to record solutions to technical problems that he encounters.

Ross said “When I first started developing software, Google and other people’s blogs were invaluable learning resources for me. This is my way of sharing my knowledge and giving something back to the software developer community. “As well as detailing solutions to technical problems, my blog also features references to leading edge technologies and bits of cool code.”

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