One of the fastest ways to make a new computer “yours” is to change the desktop wallpaper. And most operating systems make that easy, including not only the default wallpaper but many others as well. Still, that can only take a person so far, and what if a user isn’t all that fond of grassy landscapes, microphotography of grass, flowers and rocks, or the typical abstract images? For them, there are all kinds of customization websites, from Flickr DeviantArt to InterfaceLIFT to simply using Google Image search, there are tons of sources. Of course, you have to go out yourself, sift through the available options, and then finally download and add the wallpaper to your computer. There ought to be an easier way.
A program called Wally, available for Mac, Windows and Linux, makes it simple to not only find great wallpaper, but to rotate through it on a regular basis, so you always have something fresh and exciting to look at. Using Wally couldn’t be simpler. After installing it, start it up and a tiny icon appears. The icon will be in the Menu bar for Macs, the Panel for Linux and the notification area in Windows. Regardless, you’ll need to set up Wally to use it.
Doing so entails telling Wally where you want to get your images from. If you already have a large number of good wallpapers and are just using Wally to randomly shuffle through them for you (to avoid having to switch them yourself, or if the built-in wallpaper rotation functions aren’t fine-grained enough for you), the Wally can do that. Just point it at your folder of images, tell it how often you’d like to switch between pictures, and you’re good to go.
One of the best features of Wally, however, is its ability to grab images off the Internet. And Wally knows a lot of places to look. Check out the list:
With each of those websites there are different options available to you. Whether you’re searching for different keywords at Flickr or Ipernity or Google, or choosing from wallpaper types at Vladstudio, Wally lets you customize which images you grab what a particular website. Once running, Wally will then flip through your new images, and will actually keep a history for you (as well as saving them locally for “x” number of days, depending on available hard drive space), so if you see a picture you like, you can save or go back to it.
Wally has worked really well for me over the past few days. It doesn’t seem to affect my day-to-day computing, and the bandwidth needed to grab a new image is minimal. Of course, that does bring up a good point: if you’re using Wally to grab wallpapers off the Internet, you do need an active Internet connection. Otherwise, Wally is still good for rotating between different wallpapers already on your computer.
No matter how you use it, Wally is an excellent addition to your computer. It helps make your computer more “you” with very little effort, and that’s a good thing.