Archive for the ‘Cool Tools’ Category

Google Calendar supports CalDAV

Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

Ok, maybe not the most glamorous headline, but if you are looking for a way to integrate into the “cloud” with minimal effort and not paying $99 a year to Mobile Me (and praying that it works), this is a pretty good solution from our friends at Google.

I share a group calendar with my coworkers at Boxbe and I don’t always remember to update my “cloud” calendar to be inline with iCal. This pretty much solves that problem.

What’s CalDAV?

CalDAV is an open standard for sharing calendar information from a desktop computer with a server. In this case, I’m sharing iCal calendar information with Google Calendar and my co-workers can see my schedule.

Previously, I could publish my calendar to Google Calendar, but I couldn’t make any changes to it on Google’s servers. Supporting CalDAV makes this works in both directions.

Setting up

It’s pretty easy to set this up. Here are instructions for setting up iCal and Google Calendar.

gcalical.jpg

The only real trick is getting the URL correct for your calendar which is a URL that contains your Gmail address https://www.google.com/calendar/dav/ [ your Google Calendar email address ] /user.

There are some known issues, but nothing there was a show stopper for me.

I just started using this today, so I’ll let you know if I have any issues with it.

[via Daring Fireball]

Twitter in Plain English

Thursday, March 6th, 2008

My pals Lee and Sachi LeFever of CommonCraft have done it again, just in time for SXSW. These guys do a really great job of explaining difficult topics in “plain english.” These videos are really great if you are just starting out trying to figure out this strange online world.

At last year’s SXSWi in Austin, TX, Twitter broke for the first time, err, um, was a break through product that helped people quickly figure out where the cool parties were and helped them track down their friends without calling them.

Since then, Twitter has been quickly adopted (and broken) by at least some of the masses (myself included).

I didn’t really get Twitter at first and I thought that it represented all the worst things about blogging (navel gazing, echo chamber). Here is a link to the day I spent talking about my cat in protest of Twitter. I even annoyed myself.

Eventually, I came around…

So, what the heck is Twitter? If you follow me on Facebook, you’ve probably seen my rapidly changing status. That’s coming from Twitter. And while I do kid about the Twitter uptime, by and large, they’ve created an incredible service based on something very simple.

Here’s CommonCraft on Twitter in Plain English.

Mac blogger toolkit – Northern Voice 2007

Monday, February 26th, 2007

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CBC columnist and Mac geek, Tod Maffin ran another great session at Moosecamp around favorite productivity tools. Below are my favorites from the session.

  • ImageWell – Swiss Army knife for images (free)
  • Paparazzi – takes screenshots of full web pages.
  • TextExpander – condenses messages, phrases or code that you might reuse all the time into short keystrokes.
  • VoodooPad – wiki for your Mac. BEST NOTEPAD EVER!
  • Synergy – software for using one keyboard and mouse with two computers (and screens). Kind of like a KVM…
  • Hazel – best maid for cleaning up your Mac.
  • BrowserShots.org – test web designs on 31 different browser platforms.
  • QuickSilver – I’m hoping I’ll get this one day, but for now, I’ll point it out to all all of you

More tools

Audio of the session

image by Flickr user katiew