There was a post at GoingToOahu talking about the desktop widget for Kayak. I’ve been a fan of Kayak for years, and always check there when I have occasion to get away, out of curiosity, or just double-checking prices for someone else.
Kayak is a travel spider, meaning that you use it to do your search for air travel, hotel, rental car, etc, and it takes your query and uses it to search 140 sites, including the airlines, rental companies, hotel chains, and places like travelocity and hotwire, etc. The beauty of this is that you only search once, and then you get a full, sortable grid of all the results. When you find the deal you want, clicking just takes you to the website that offers the deal you wanted. No funny business.
Something I discovered recently while looking for a deal on a hotel stay for a road trip was the new maps. They have done a lot of work getting it integrated with Google maps. This view shows the properties mapped out in the area, and at the bottom of the map is a google search. Entering the name of a point of interest in the search box marks it on the map, so that you are able to see how far each possible property is from your chosen activity, and of course, all of the markers that Google maps already has in place. It’s a very nice feature, and I haven’t seen it elsewhere.