the transition to digital journalism
A widget is a bit of code that can be embedded on a website, blog or a personal page on a social network to display all different types of content drawn from other websites, including a feed of news stories.
Widgets can be used to display everything from weather, traffic and stock reports to event calendars and personalized maps.
Many news organizations developed widgets to provide feeds of their news stories and other content that can be embedded on other websites and social networks.
One simple example is National Geographic's "Photo of the Day" widget for Facebook.
Here's the widget the Windy Citizen news site in Chicago provides for adding their news feed to a social network or blog (scroll down to the section on "Add today's top stories to your site").
For more information on how widgets work, see the wikipedia entry for Web Widgets.
See also our tutorial on Creating a Publication Widget.
Readings and Resources
itduzzit.com - provides a drag and drop editor that allows non-programmers to create simple applications and widgets drawing on APIs.