Calendars on Unit Web Sites

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WoodDA
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Calendars on Unit Web Sites

Postby WoodDA » Sat Jan 20, 2007 12:38 pm

The Unit Web Sites are great. Our Stake is up and running.

What plans, if any, are there for adding the following features to the unit web sites:
-Bulk upload of events
-Allowing events from one Resource/Calendar to merge into other Resources. Similar to how Stake events get merged into Ward Calendars. OR Ability to filter out events by category. (ie: show only Youth events on the Ward Calendar so separate Resources for each auxilliary don't have to be maintained)

Thanks for all that you are doing to provide useful tools to our units,

Darren

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WelchTC
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Postby WelchTC » Sat Jan 20, 2007 3:05 pm

All good suggestions! Don't know if they are on the plans or not. I'll pass along.

Tom

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Resource

Postby russellhltn » Sat Jan 20, 2007 3:41 pm

I'd like to see better integration between the main calendar and the resource calendars. As it is now, it's too easy to book a resource when the main schedule clearly shows that resource is going to be taken by some other event or vice versa (sp?).

One of the lessons from the old Franklin Planner seminars was "thou shalt have but one calendar" otherwise you'll end up with conflicts. As one who has BTDT, I have a testimony of that. :) I'd like to see the local unit websites reflect that philosophy. Perhaps allowing the main calendar to "push down" to the resource calendar, much the same way the stake can push down to the ward. I'm not sure how to spot and notify of conflicts.

I'd also like to see if there's a way of adding "layers" to the calendars much like the Calendar Creator program. That would allow members to see a calendar uncluttered by "EQ PPI with Bishop" while still keeping the leaders in sync.

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greenwoodkl
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SUGGESTIONS - Recurrence w/ edit, options for emails

Postby greenwoodkl » Sun Jan 21, 2007 2:45 am

Some suggestions for the calendars:

It would be nice to have a recurring event with the ability to add specialized additional information on a per event basis - i.e. Mutual (every Weds.), additional info about each week's activity could be added to each week at a later time.

As it is currently, reminder emails for events are sent only when the event is added. It would be nice to be able to specify when an email will be sent - i.e. 3 days before the event to X groups. It would also be nice to have a way to edit the From field in ALL emails to not have the admin's name and personal email, but a separate account they setup for just website stuff or some general ward account or something.

mattandmarie-p40
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Google Calendars

Postby mattandmarie-p40 » Sun Jan 21, 2007 9:12 pm

Hi - I work on a website for the local Boy Scout Council (http://www.minsitrails.com) and they have now turned to use Google Calendars.

They have found many benefits to using this service of Google. The integration, search capabilities, muti-publishers, recurring events, link to google maps and the ability to comment on events are just a few.

If the church does not "use" google calendars, then maybe features could be gleaned.

Matt

pwhiting-p40
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Postby pwhiting-p40 » Sun Jan 21, 2007 9:53 pm

mattandmarie wrote:If the church does not "use" google calendars, then maybe features could be gleaned.


agree - I'm impressed with the features that are offered. Until we change platforms for local unit websites we'll have limited ability to provide more features.

You can import the calendar from your local unit website into your google calendar:

1. on your local unit website export your ward calendar as ical and save it to a file.

In google do the following:

2. create a new calendar - you'll need this in order to eventually delete everything on it when you do an update (ugly, I realize)

3. go to manage calendars and choose import calendar.

4. select the appropriate filename and be sure to change the default next to "choose calendar" to be the new calendar you created in step 2 above. Don't use the default calendar - you'll be sorry when it's time to update, trust me...

5. hit import.

To update, delete all of the events in your ward calendar (on google) and repeat steps 1 and 3-5.

russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Mon Jan 22, 2007 12:51 am

I wonder how much Google would want to run their code on Church servers. Or alternatively, to run a "private" version of their calendars with no advertising? Might be cheaper then trying to develop it in-house and possibly risk software patent issues.

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WelchTC
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Postby WelchTC » Mon Jan 22, 2007 8:58 am

What would be cool is for someone to write a program that will automate the importing of your local unit website calendar into Google calendar by using the Google Calendar API. The program could take the exported calendar file from the local unit website and automatically suck it into the calendar you specify.

Tom

grhart-p40
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Subscribe to your Ward Calendar via webDAV

Postby grhart-p40 » Tue Jan 23, 2007 3:02 pm

Agreed that the ward calendars could glean a thing or two from Google Calendar.

In my humble opinion, much better than manually (or automatically) importing an instance of the ward calendar where the instance is immediately outdated, would be the ability to "subscribe" to the ward calendar straight off of the unit website. Those familiar with Apple iCal, probably know that you can publish or subscribe to .ics files (iCal files) on a webDAV enabled server. I understand Outlook 2007 users have this ability too, though someone should confirm. As an experiment, last night I downloaded my ward's .ics file and posted it on my webDAV enabled server for stake/ward leaders to subscribe to. So far it's worked like a charm. The only thing missing is a script to automate the repeated downloading and refreshing of the .ics file, which would be trival. I imagine the general ward membership isn't so interested in such proximity to the ward calendar, but Stake Leaders, Bishoprics and PEC folks could have a read-only version of the ward calendar on their desktop computer that is allways up-to-date, and can be taken with them when synced with their laptop, cell phone, iPod or whatever.

-Greg

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WelchTC
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Subscribing to iCal feeds

Postby WelchTC » Wed Jan 24, 2007 8:16 am

grhart wrote:In my humble opinion, much better than manually (or automatically) importing an instance of the ward calendar where the instance is immediately outdated, would be the ability to "subscribe" to the ward calendar straight off of the unit website.


Good idea. Most modern calendars allow you to subscribe to ical feeds and will even auto-update after a predetermined amount of time. I know that the sunbirdproject from Mozilla does that as does many of the Linux flavor calendars (Kontact, for example). Even Google Calendar allows you to subscribe to public calendars. I personally find it a very handy feature.

Tom


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