Calendar sharing without borders

January 29, 2008

If I send you an email, it doesn’t matter whether I am using Outlook, Gmail, Thunderbird… You can read it, reply, forward, delete etc. with your own email program of choice. But for calendar users there is no such luxury of cross-platform calendar interaction. We can send calendar invitations to each other in some circumstances e.g. a Google Calendar user can send an invitation to an Outlook user and it will be interpreted correctly by Outlook.

However, calendar sharing between different calendar programs is difficult, impossible or expensive. If you’re using Outlook without an Exchange server, how do you share your calendar with a friend on Outlook, Apple iCal or Google? The lack of standards in calendaring makes this a daunting task. The only workable approach is to get the people you need to share with to all adopt the same calendar program, assuming that program has sharing which not all do. This is not really a solution to my mind.

There are some point-to-point solutions that let you keep two of your calendars in sync, e.g. Outlook and Google, but I think this is only a small part of the solution.

If we could provide a cross-platform calendar sharing solution, would people find it useful? I certainly would find it useful to let my wife on Outlook Calendar have access to my work Google Apps calendar and vice versa. What sharing permutations would be the most beneficial? Outlook <-> Outlook or Outlook <-> Apple iCal <-> Outlook or <-> Google or Google <-> 30boxes.

Sharing is good, let’s make it accessible and easy!

The Calgoo Blog is Back

January 25, 2008

Well, we had a blog but it has been offline since Dec 2006. We found we didn’t have the time to update it effectively. What went wrong? I think we used it for too many purposes: company news, product news, tech support, user feedback…This also meant there were too many Calgoo people involved. We moved our tech support to a Forum which has worked well, but the Calgoo Blog has remained offline until today!

So now we are back online with a repurposed blog i.e. this is now my blog! I will be using this blog to talk about the way people use electronic calendars in their lives and how this maps to the direction Calgoo Software is heading. Hopefully I can use some examples from my own life and get comments and perspectives from others.

So what do I mean by “electronic calendaring”? I am talking about the use of desktop and online calendars such as Outlook, Google, iCal, 30boxes and the like. I am not talking about “scheduling” which to my mind is more about figuring out when a certain event can take place. Once this “scheduling” discussion has concluded, an event exists and should find its way into a calendar.

Let the calendaring begin…

Andrzej Kowalski, CEO Calgoo Software