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Can you recommend a calendar that includes customizable forms?
Occasionally you’ll want to to have a shared private or public calendar, want to let other people put dates and details in, but want to control what they put in (to a degree), and you’ll need to MANUALLY view or vet their entry pre-posting.
If you are running a mac, there’s a piece of software called iCalMaker (mmisoftware) that will rip vCal, tab and comma delimited text into and out of iCal format. I use it to rip Windows Outlook into iCal and back again in corporate settings.
The workflow is this:
- Give them any form you like on the web, but use a free or low cost form service ( JotForm or many others, as long as you can export the results). This way you will get a date-picker.
- You’ll get an email every time there is a submission, you log in and download an excel or text version of the submission.
- Open it up, then cut and paste the data into your ‘I made this earlier ’ “calendar maker” excel sheet — which does this:
- Your “calendar maker” has a worksheet you paste into, with text calculations that immediately convert the pasted submission fields to be text strings that make sense for iCalMaker (like put the dates and times in format, name the fields, put them in the right order, etc.)
- Your “calendar maker” also has a linked worksheet you export from, that presents the resultant modified data only, producing a clean tab delimited file.
- Export from here as a tab delimited file.
- Pull into iCalMaker, check, export on your mac as iCal into a particular named calendar.
- Publish your particular named (desktop) iCal calendar online so people can subscribe to it (lots of ways to do this, including pushing to Google calendar and making it public from there).
Apart from a bit of excel formula there isn’t much difficulty here.
Without the mac, iCalMaker, iCal, or Excel your workflow might look like this:
- Use JotForm as above
- Manually put the details into a free online calendar you can embed on your site and offer as a feed / subscription for iCal.
For this I’d recommend 30boxes, because you can use natural language to put basic entries in, or even a quick email / cut and paste while you are reading the email from JotForm (Subject line carries the date and title, Body for notes).
In either case, the use of an online form service means that when someone rings up with an event you can quickly send them an email link to the public hosted form for them to fill out. This saves your transcription and possible error, and you don’t need to get permission to post the input form on your organisation’s website, even if the final destination is a shared calendar inside your firewall.
Tagged: calendar software
, iCal software
, online forms
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