Using Google Calendar

Recently I’ve started using Google Calendar to help me track my day to day activities, as opposed to Outlook.  I wanted a calendar that was accessable from anywhere, since I’m not always at the same computer.  That was my primary concern, and it was also Google Calendar’s primary feature!  After using Gmail for several months (before I bought my domain and moved all my mail here), I realized that Google puts together an incredibly solid suite of programs designed to help us be more efficient.

Google Calendar offers many features and benefits, such as the ability to add multiple calendars and color code them.  I like this because it allows me to separate different activities.  In addition, it is incredibly easy to share your calendar with someone else and control what they can and can’t see.  For instance, I can share my main calendar with someone, and allow them to see and edit events, just see but not edit events, or only see that I’m busy.

In addition, sharing a calendar publicly is easy.  A few clicks gives you the URL that you can embed in your website, share via email, and much more.

The one problem that I initially ran into with Google Calendar was the inability to sync my schedule with my Palm, since my Palm syncs with my Outlook calendar.  Recently, Google released a utility that will let your calendar sync with Outlook, so this no longer remained a problem.  There are also utilities that will sync for your Blackberry and iPhone, for those who carry different technologies than I.

It’s certainly possible to set up a series of calendars for everyone in your office, which makes sharing events and meetings easy.  You can create an event on the calendar, and specify recipients that can respond as attending or not attending.  In addition, events can have reminders set up to pop up, so there is no excuse for “Oh, I totally forgot!”

In my experience thus far, Google Calendar has been an invaluable tool to help me stay organized and see where I need to be and when.  Give it a shot!

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