In keeping this blog I have deliberately avoided cluttering it with widgets and tools. I have always thought that they serve no real purpose on a blog.
Until recently On a Hill offered a widget linking to my Flickr account (my collection of three photographs not unsurprisingly has attracted little interest), a widget linking to my del.icio.us collection, and a few links to a few blogs that I enjoy.
I take note of my visitors with Google Analytics and Site Meter both of which run quietly in the background, and last year I added a Google tool providing search for visitors. I really don't know if anyone has used it, somehow I doubt it.
This week I added two new widgets that might or might not stay On the Hill.
The Feedjit Live Traffic Map.
Feedjit state that their "mission is to provide high performance real-time widgets for the blogging community that are free and easy to use".
I'm trying their map. It shows the world pointing out where you and other visitors came from to visit The Hill. Not much use to you the reader, because you know where you are, but I like to see where you are in the world.
Clicking on the map brings up a larger zoomable display showing further information about the last hundred days worth of visitors. At the moment the map looks a little bare, but it will soon be covered with flags. :-)
The Quintura Cloud.
Quintura is a visual search tool (based in Russia?) which has just released a search option for individual web sites. The tool is based around a dynamic tag cloud, which modifies your search as you click on each tag.
I may not be the best person to judge its efficiency as I rarely look at the blog from the outside; only you the users can tell.
So if it helps you find your way around The Hill tell me.