Friday, July 14, 2006


An old-fashioned paper calendar — the kind with a page for each month — hangs on my office wall. Just now I happened to glance over at it, and … the page that’s showing is for March! Well, at least it’s for this year!

But that got the ponder going, because not so very many years ago I was completely dependent on such calendars (or a daily diary, or other such planner). And now I (obviously) rarely use one. What’s happened?

For me, the first thing that happened was electronic organizers (such as the Palm Pilot). When those gadgets first got really usable, back in the mid '90s or so, I “adopted” one. I used them for years, even though keeping them synchronized (with Outlook’s calendar, a must in the corporate world) and writing with that silly little stylus was a real pain in the butt. The benefits made it worth the trouble, especially the fact that I could easily carry my schedule around and at the same time make it visible to all those I worked with.

But for the past year or so, I’ve stopped using the organizer. I still have one, but I haven’t powered it up for quite a while. I experimented with various other things, all of them complete flops, until my recent discovery of Google Calendar. I’ve been using it for a few weeks now, and I’ve been more than just pleased — it is, for me, almost a perfect solution. Because’s Google Calendar is web-based, I can share my calendar with anyone I care to. I can keep multiple calendars, for different purposes. I can get to my calendars from anywhere in the world, so long as I have web access. It sends me email reminders when its time to do something (and it will send them to my cell phone, if I want it to). I don’t have to worry about backing it up, or any other kind of maintenance — Google does it all for me. And best of all, it’s absolutely free.

So my Norman Rockwell paper calendar just sits there on my wall. There’s not a note of any kind on it — it’s completely pristine. And maybe in another four or five months, I’ll look at it again. Meanwhile, I’ll click on over to my Google calendar to see what I’m supposed to do today. Oh, yeah — work!


  1. In the old blog, Simon said:
    I checked out the Google Calendar a few months ago. I agree that it’s great. However, I still need to synch with a corporate calendar and, last time I looked, it can’t do that. Any ideas?

  2. Not a clue about the sync — but I’m wondering why you need to do that. Your Google calendar can be (if you choose) visible to everybody, and it sends invitations and so forth just like Outlook/Exchange calendars do…

  3. In the old blog, Simon said:
    I need to do that because my largest client is a fairly large public company. Various people need to see my calendar and it just wouldn’t play for me to say I’m not using Outlook. When I say “see my calendar” I mean see when I’m available and not see the details of what I’m doing. Also, what I do is use my Palm Pilot to synch my client office machine with my home office machine. I’ve done that for many years and it works very well. Yes, I could lug a laptop back and forth and use only one machine. That’s not for me. One option would be to use only my client’s calendar. It’s almost always available via the Web. My ultimate goal is to get everything I do onto the Web. That will be really nice…