The content of this blog is my personal opinion only. Although I am an employee - currently of Imagination Technologies's MIPS group, in the past of other companies such as Intellectual Ventures, Intel, AMD, Motorola, and Gould - I reveal this only so that the reader may account for any possible bias I may have towards my employer's products. The statements I make here in no way represent my employer's position, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of my employer. In fact, this posting may not even represent my personal opinion, since occasionally I play devil's advocate.

See http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcxddbtr_23cg5thdfj for photo credits.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Hierarchies for Google Calendar

This topic is what inspired me to get a Google Blogger site:

I just set myself and my wife up with Google Calendar.

We each have our own calendars, plus one for our daughter. I have also set up a Family calendar. Plus, I have set up "Possibilities" calendars, for things that I am interested in enough to want to be able to see on my calendar, but which I am not committed to going to.

And I have also subscribed to various public calendars, such as tides, events, etc.

After all this I end up having something like 20 calendars connected to my Google Calendar.

Some would say this is overkill. I take the viewpoint that it is reasonable to this, if Google Calendar had tools for managing such long lists of meta-calendars. Unfortunately, this is lacking.

Basic tools such as being able to select or deselect all calendars would be nice.

Going further, I would like to be able to group my calendar subscriptions in various ways. Hierarchically, but possibly overlapping.

E.g. I would like a button to be able to link my personal and family "Possibilities" calendars - so that I can easily see just commitments.

E.g. I want to be able to enable/disable viewing of all of my public calendar subscriptions.

E.g. I would like to group my public calendar subscriptions by topics, such as music, recreation, kid's activities.

In particular, I find it most annoying to see lots of events that I am not interested in in some of the local event public calendars. I can copy just the events that I am interested in to one of my calendars, but that doesn't help me the next time I want to look at new activites on this public calendar. I think that I want to create "subtractive" calendars - a personal calendar that is lnked to a public calendar, but where I have explicitly removed events that I am not interested in.

Similarly, I would like to be able to annotate events in a public calendar - e.g. with car pool arrangemens for a concert. Once again, making a local copy is a start - but onced that local copy is edited, the link to the original event, which may be rescheduled, may be lost (or at least confused).

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