Every Mac comes with the very capable iCal calendar app pre-installed. It’s able to handle everything from recurring alarms to launching programs on a schedule. But calendars are very personal things and what might appeal to one person will not appeal to others. So it’s important to find a calendar that you like to use: you’re going to be using a calendar every day so you want to find one that you’ll be comfortable using. This article looks at multiple calendar options for Mac OS X.
Ycal Calendar for the Mac
I must admit I was a little blown away when I saw the interface for this app. Ycal shows you all 365 days of the year at a glance. It will appeal to users who like a bird’s eye view of the entire year:
- Holidays, vacations and other special events can highlighted with colored markers. This makes it easy to see them at a glance for the entire year.
- Each day of the year can have a note attached to it.
Ycal makes it easy to implement Seinfeld’s calendar / Ben Franklin’s calendar: everytime you perform a habit you want to train yourself to do everyday, you mark it down on the calendar. If not, you leave it blank. With Ycal, it’s very easy to see the days in which you completed the task in which case you didn’t just buy the highlight color. Here’s a pic of the webapp “Joe’s Goals” which implements the idea over a week’s schedule:
TimeWorks Calendar app for the Mac
Timeworks is a calendar app you can pretty much figure out by looking at a screenshot of it in action:
Enter your events into the calendar (the white window) which show up as floating colored squares that drift from right to left on your desktop. The yellow line on the left-hand side of the screen represents “now”: events slowly drift towards it during the day, and any event box that touches it means that it is happening right now. Event’s that are closer to the line will be starting soon and events far from it will be happening later. The time scale can be adjusted in the preferences. The simple progression of events appearing on the display and moving slowly across the window or desktop towards the now mark makes it very easy to visualize your upcoming obligations. The most fascinating aspect of working with the TimeWorks calendar is how many times you’ll hit Expose’s “show desktop” key (F9) just so you can see your calendar embedded into the desktop. For those who want to stick with iCal and get the same “moving events superimposed on the desktop” effect, there’s iCal Viewer.
Caliander Mac Calendar App
The Caliander app is similar to TimeWorks, except that it shows the progression of events within its own self-contained window and not on the desktop. One interesting feature is that events that happen soon are perceptually larger compared to events in the future which are smaller and more squished together.
Blotter for iCal
For those who love to use iCal, the Blotter app will superimpose your iCal calendar onto your desktop:
SmartDay Todo and Calendar for the Mac
SmartDay is a little bit different kind of calendar in that it includes a ToDo aspect:
- The calendar portion on the left side has a daily events view in its bottom half: events are left-aligned while to-dos are right-aligned.
- The next section lists your to do items for the day. As you fill these in, they will auto-populate onto your calendar as ToDos.
- The ToDo section also has a notes section that includes text notes, website links and checklists.