Increase your productivity with Google Calender for worldwide online collaboration
The interface of Google Calendar, designed by Kevin Fox (who also designed Gmail and the second version of Google Reader), is similar to desktop calendar applications such as Microsoft Outlook or iCal on Mac OS X. The Ajax-driven interface enables users to view, add, and drag-and-drop events from one date to another without reloading the page. It supports view modes such as weekly, monthly, and agenda. Users can “quick add” calendar events by typing standard English phrases, such as “Dinner with Michael 7 p.m. tomorrow”. Users can also set the number of days to show in their custom view mode.
Events are stored online; consequently, the calendar can be viewed from any location that has Internet access. For users who might experience a hard drive failure, it also means that no data is lost. The application can import Microsoft Outlook calendar files (.csv) and iCalendar files (.ics, the de facto open calendaring file format). Multiple calendars can be added and shared, allowing various levels of permissions for the users. This enables collaboration and sharing of schedules amongst groups. General calendars available for importing into one’s account include those containing national holidays of various countries. Users can also add “live” iCalendar URLs that update regularly.
Google Calendar allows multiple calendars to be created and shown in the same view. Each can be shared, either read-only or with full edit control, and either with specified people or with everyone (public calendars). In February 2009, Google discontinued the option of searching for public calendars from the search field by removing the “Search Public Events” button. It also disabled its public calendar gallery, citing maintenance and usability issues. The company suggests adding calendars via the “Interesting Calendars” feature, known calendar URLs, or via email requests to friends. Daily “To Do” tasks cannot currently be shared between users.