Online Calendar

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7 Replies - 1033 Views - Last Post: 17 December 2009 - 01:37 PM

#1 BenignDesign   User is offline

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Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 08:58 AM

My organization is looking for a new calendar system for our website. The system we are currently using is so old the company that created it refuses to support it until we buy an updated version.

While I would much prefer to build a custom calendar as I build the new website and the custom CMS to go with it, the lady in charge of keeping the calendar updated (currently the ONLY person on campus with access to the calendar system) is quite anxious to pass the calendar keeper torch on to anyone else willing to wield it.

The school's requirements are as follows:
1. The new software must be PURCHASABLE.
They do NOT want anything that has to be leased or requires monthly subscriptions or access fees.
2. The new software must HOSTABLE.
They do NOT want anything that requires use of the selling company's servers or databases.
3. The new software must be AFFORDABLE.
Being a community college, funds are limited, the budget is tight and the program has to be relatively cheap.

With these ideas in mind, I have done some extensive searching and found a couple systems that look promising, but being the community of professionals that we are, I was hoping someone here might have a recommendation before I blow the software budget on a calendar we're going to hate three weeks from now.

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Replies To: Online Calendar

#2 skyhawk133   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 09:26 AM

I know you said they want it hostable, but Google has an amazing calendar and it has API's and great display options.
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#3 Nykc   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 09:32 AM

I would second the Google calendar. Second to none!

You need to educate them on the benefits of Google Calendar as they probably don't even know it exists.
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#4 snoj   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 09:34 AM

Sharepoint? It has calendering and a bunch of other things and it integrates with Outlook's calender features.
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#5 BenignDesign   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 09:58 AM

I think I may sit down with my boss this afternoon and discuss the Google option. At the very least, it's something we could use for a temporary solution until I build a custom set up.

Given that we have sports schedules, academic schedules, student event schedules, financial aid calendars, admissions and registration dates, etc, etc, etc.... I think a custom solution would be the best option... to have something fully integrated with the content management system to update automatically when a user updates their portions of the website. As it is right now, it works this way:

1. The basketball coach needs to post an announcement for an event being sponsored by the basketball team.
2. He emails the athletic director who manually adds the information to a request sheet which is emailed to me.
3. I manually enter the event details and link to the flier from the main page.
4. I manually enter the event details and link to the flier from the basketball team's page.
5. I manually enter the event details and link to the flier from the news and events page.
6. I email the information to the lady who maintains the current calendar.
7. She manually enters the event details into the calendar system.
8. After the event, I manually remove the details from the main page, basketball team page and news and events page.

What I want to do - ultimately - is build a custom calendar that will pull the events directly from the database and auto-populate. Just as the main page, the basketball team page and the news and events page with auto-populate (and subsequently auto-remove after the fact) with details entered to the CMS by the coach. Thus, eliminating most of the headache listed above.

However, trying to explain this to a room full of people who stare at me like I speak in an alien tongue, has not been an easy task.
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#6 Nykc   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 10:08 AM

Haha - I know your pain all to well. even as a temporary solution Google will allow multiple calendars to be pulled from various places - giving you all the freedom you need. To buy time while building your own you can always play on the budget.

Hey this solution is free and does everything we want.

Good luck!
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#7 BenignDesign   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 01:34 PM

I had a meeting with my boss and the crazy calendar-updating lady.

I posed the question: "Is there a particular reason you chose the current software over a free service such as Google Calendar?"

Crazy calendar-updating lady: "Google Calendar didn't exist when we bought that software."

Me: "Ok, so the software is at least 5 years old. Is there a reason you didn't switch over to a free service when one became available?"

Crazy calendar-updating lady: "I don't want to learn something new."

Long story short, I have received the giant, official, boss-thumbs up for use of Google calendar as a temporary solution. w00t.

Crazy calendar-updating lady is dancing a jig as she moves her stuff to a new office for a new job in a new department.... one that doesn't involve updating calendars.
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#8 Nykc   User is offline

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Re: Online Calendar

Posted 17 December 2009 - 01:37 PM

Good job...

I work with a few Crazy-Calendar updating ladies myself so I can see the sweet victory pouring through your veins as you tell us the good news.

Also most people think because it is free it sucks, but then if you don't feel like explaining how Open-source or many free applications are just as good if not better you can then always counter with "Yeah well this is Google!"
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