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There are times when covering even a company as cool as Apple makes you feel removed from much more pressing events going on in the world. The only reason why I can enjoy things like the new iPod Nano (which I bought the day after it was unveiled—the 2 GB in black, if you must know), is that my survival needs have been met. I have a roof over my head and food and water anytime I want it. For this, I am lucky.

Unfortunately for our friends down in the Gulf Coast aren’t so lucky. Hurricane Katrina took a big toll down there, on an area half the size of France. That’s pretty darn big. But Apple stepped right up and put a big donation button right up on the iTunes Music Store shortly after disaster struck, encouraging all music lovers to drop a few bucks in their digital bucket.

I was also glad to see that given that Apple has made creating widgets easy enough that programmers out there whipped up a Katrina-related widget in just a few days.

The widget has news on the front side and a donation page on the backside. Hats off to the folks at TravelWidgets for whipping this up. They’ve also got another Hurricane Tracker widget for keeping an eye on future ‘canes.

If you haven’t already, please donate to the relief efforts. Anything you can spare would really help.

EDITOR’S NOTE: As with any major fund-raising effort, scams are always possible. Donate your money wisely, ideally to reputable charity organizations. For more information on fraud related to Hurricane Katrina visit

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