Jan 072017
 

One of the many plugin types used to extend a WordPress site are calendar ones. Many free and premium ones are available in the repository and elsewhere with a whole set of functionality from displaying simple dates to client booking for example. XO Event Calendar is a free plugin on the simpler side of the spectrum.

After a normal plugin installation the Events menu is added in the WordPress backend. XO Event Calendar adds its own custom post type and taxonomy (category). Each category can have its own background color on the calendar. In a similar way any number of holidays can be created and assigned background colors with ‘day-off’, ‘morning-off’ and ‘afternoon-off’ presets available. Add new events by entering a title, description and optionally an excerpt. Pick a start and end date and choose or create its category on the fly. The event title will be displayed on the calendar and linked to the detail page.

 

To display the calendar on a page or post use the [xo_event_calendar] shortcode. The shortcode includes the option for displaying holidays, somewhat surprisingly showing holidays are not “true” by default. Other options include showing previous and next month arrows and ability to limit the number of months one can move to, for example previous=”1″ and next=”6″ will only display the previous month’s and the next six months’ dates. It is possible to include only certain categories by naming which to display using categories=”slug”. One can also display different versions of the calendar using the id option (“xo-event-calendar-2”, “xo-event-calendar-3”, etc.), this requires a different page for each calendar displayed.

All in all XO Event Calendar is a clean and minimalist calendar for WordPress, it is relatively new on the scene.

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Oct 292012
 

Desktop iCalendar Lite (Version: 1.9.6.1) is a small calendar and to do program that sits on the desktop. Its lite version features to do and event lists besides its configurable calendar. It supports multiple calendars so one can have public holidays, personal calendar (including iCalendar support) and public google calendar displayed together.

Desktop iCalendar Lite

Using the plus buttons – visible when hovering over their respective windows or sections –  one can add events and to do items. Events can have summary, description, date range, category (icon), alarm and recurrence. To do items can have summary, description, start and due dates, category and reminder. Calendar days with events are shown in a different color. Hovering over a day with an event offers a tool tip style summary of the event and clicking on a day with one shows the text associated with the event inside the events docked window.

Several themes are available. Font, color, background and transparency of each can be configured to make it more individual. The to do and events windows can be turned off in the program’s settings.

Desktop iCalendar Lite should run on Windows XP and newer. Note that while testing it I noticed that it was trying to sync – the tray icon would change – when there shouldn’t be anything to sync with. Using the tray icon menu —> Calendars I turned off all calendars except the local one created for testing but it seemed to try to want to sync.

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Nov 072011
 

EfficientPIM is a useful and multi-featured PIM (Personal Information Manager). Its interface is the now somewhat common Outlook type window with common and relevant links listed on the top left with access to all available features (not forgetting the ‘Show more buttons’ link to see them all) occupying the bottom left. EfficientPIM also has a few extra, less common features that make it a more complete PIM.

EfficientPIM

EfficientPIM opens with the default Today view or screen with the date, week and day of the year shown with, as expected, a list of upcoming events and tasks. As with all screens or views this can be customized to show more or less, for example to show different number of days than the upcoming 7. Also from this screen new events, tasks and diary entries can be added.

The Calendar view is where one can see and set events, each event can have a color associated with it. Double click a day to create an event. Choose its subject, start and end date, importance label (color) and optionally set a reminder with sound. The comment feature is a rich text area that can also include a file attachment and/or a link to a file (on the computer or online). The recurrence tab of the new event window includes all options from time, day, day of the week and also range. The calendar view also features a mini-calendar and task view on the right hand side.

Next up is the Contacts view, by default it features full name, company, business phone, mobile phone and email but by clicking the customize current view link one can show lots more including address, title, fax, additional email, website, nickname, hobbies, instant messaging address and even more. There are also 6 custom fields available. One can create groups (Action —> New Group) to group contacts together. It is also possible to sort contacts by any field and view them in card or table view.

Events and Tasks are similar in the sense that a name, comment, time, duration and reminder can be set for most anything.

Diary is ofcourse set by date but can be divided into groups. All entries can later be viewed by either date or group. An entry can also be associated with a contact.

The Notes section is the place to write down anything that perhaps doesn’t belong elsewhere, this can also be associated with a contact and grouped as well.

Desktop Notes (see image below) are similar to Notes but with the additional feature that if so checked the (resizable) notes can float on the desktop. This way a note is always visible and can not be missed.

EfficientPIM

EfficientPIM also has FTP and Email Account sections with all the relevant fields (server address, password, etc.) for each. The Favorite URL bookmark manager, Password Manager and Software Registration Code provide the EfficientPIM user with even more ways to store information.

The search within EfficientPIM can be global or per section to search inside notes only for example.

EfficientPIM works on Windows (both 32 and 64 bit versions) versions going back to Windows 98 . A free version with less features is always available.

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Aug 042011
 

Comment below for your chance to win Picture Collage Maker Pro from PearlMountainSoft!

Picture Collage Maker Pro is a fun and useful program from Pearl Mountain Software. With it you can create collages of pictures just to keep as images or as scrapbooks and you may also create greeting cards, desktop wallpapers and calendars.

Picture Collage Maker Pro

Upon start up Picture Collage Maker Pro offers four choices on how to proceed. The first method is to start a blank collage. Here one can choose different sizes of paper, greeting cards, desktop wallpaper or simply a custom size. The second option is a template wizard, in this case photos are added and then one of the pre-made layouts (greeting cards, collages, etc.) are chosen. The third option is to create from template, this is essentially the same as the second option but the user will see the layouts first and then add photos. The fourth and last option is the grid collage wizard which lets the user divide a page into equal size grids and then include images in a rectangular grid.

Once in the program Picture Collage Maker Pro supports drag and drop to add images. Images can then be aligned, resized and rotated. Additionally one may choose a background and it is also possible to add masks, frames, clipart and shapes. All in all Picture Collage Maker Pro is a complete program and it is easy to use (see image for a sample I created in seconds) and comes complete with built-in print capability.

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May 062011
 

DocPad (Version:10.0 as of this post) is a text editor and an enhanced alternative to Notepad. Beside the typical plain text editing it offers the following and more.
Adding or removing indentations. Bookmarking specific lines. Jumping to a specific line. Removing extra spaces. Converting case. Converting between formats like Base-64, UTF-7 and others. Dragging and dropping files or chunks of text. Spell checking.
DocPad has built in calculator, calendar and character map tools as well.

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Jan 232011
 

My Calendar

My Calendar is a small and lightweight program that shows a three month calendar and features other tools to set up and keep a schedule and birthday dates.

Upon launch My Calendar presents today’s date. One can add notes for each day, sort of like a diary, by clicking on the date on the calendar and start typing in the Note area. When done clicking Add/Replace will save the note for that day. The note area makes it easy to paste or copy text from and to the Windows clipboard. Categories can also be assigned to notes or entries. MyNote is the default but more can be added by clicking the small + button just under the category drop down. There are further buttons to delete or rename categories and a check box to make one the default or auto selected category for new notes.

The My Schedule tab is used for keeping a list of tasks. One chooses a time and day(s) and adds an event which is in turn added to a list. All events or schedules are shown in a simple list. Events can be removed by highlighting each and clicking the remove button.

The Birthday Manager is easy to use and perhaps easier to organize. Birthdays are added and shown in a list but each birthday can be assigned a group (family, friends and co-workers perhaps?) A group is created much the same way as a category is created in the My Note tab described above.

The Time Zone Converter is a simple tool to choose the current or other time zones and then get a list of times around the world. However in my test not all times were correct, specifically time differences between northern and southern hemisphere cities were off.

The Date Time Tools provides days in between and a handful of other information between two chosen dates.

The Digital Calendar tab lets the user switch to another view of My Calendar. This view is one that includes a digital clock and optionally a list of upcoming schedules and notes.

Even though there is no specific information on the program’s site My Calendar should run on most Windows versions and at less than half a Mega Byte and using little RAM it can prove to be a useful download.

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Jan 082011
 

Makagiga

Makagiga has a simple interface where it attempts to provide an everything at your finger tips type of experience. It comes with widgets to populate its window. The widgets include To-do, Notes, Calendar and Internet Search. Additional widgets can be downloaded (Edit—>Get More Widgets) and include the likes of a Digital Clock and Countdown timer, among others. Somewhat confusing it also supports plugins and no real distinction is made with its widgets. A separate menu (Tools—>Add or Remove Plugins) and window is used to download and use plugins such as an advanced text editor but then to get even more plugins one can click the Get More Plugins link on this same Add or Remove Plugins window. These additional plugins include such things as a chart generator, a Wolfram|Alpha query and others.

The ability to subscribe to RSS feeds comes already built-in and therefore Makagiga can be used as a news feed as well.

Makagiga requires Java and Windows XP at a minimum. Separate portable (use the run-portable.exe file) and Linux versions are available as well.

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Jan 032011
 

Calender Magic

Calendar Magic is not a new program, it is at version 17.7 now and its history can be traced back to 1995. Its interface is not the most elegant but that doesn’t detract from what it offers.

Some of its features follow but there is more and playing with the program indeed reveals lots more.

Quick Notes for holding text. 15 numbered sheets are available which can be renamed to more descriptive titles.

Reminders. Three types are available, one which defines a repeatable day and month alarm. A second that lets the user pick things like every first Sunday of the month and lastly a third type to set alarms for day(s) of the month.

A reaction timer and stop watch (See Time menu)

A ‘This is your life’ feature (see Dates menu) which provides a lot information about any birth date.

Gregorian and 30 other calendars from the likes of Persian Astronomical to Baha’i and more. These can be viewed in ‘dual’ or ‘comparison’ mode to compare days with the Gregorian. Additionally a date conversion tool to show what any date would be in other calenders. Also a ‘number of days between’ calculator.

A list of holidays or ‘observed’ days for many countries.

Several ‘Planning Calendars’ that lay out dates in a way useful to bankers, teachers and others.

Solar and lunar phase and eclipse data for any year up to the year 3000. Sunrise, sunset, moonrise and moonset for many locations.

World clock to show up to 12 world times together. Many more current local times including distance calculations.

A rather comprehensive unit converter. Many calculators (scientific, fraction, statistic, Body Mass Index, Ovulation and others) in the Utilities menu.

Discovering Calendar Magic’s features is a fun exercise. Virtually every screen can be printed and Calendar Magic should run on all Windows versions going back to Windows 95.

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Nov 222010
 

UK's Kalendar

UK’s Kalender is a no frills program that is a calendar, to do list and event reminder in one. It presents a list view for to do items independent of events that can be entered into the calendar which itself is available in week, fortnight, month and year views.

UK’s Kalender minimizes into the system tray to always be available for reminders and their associated popups. These alarms also have a snooze function. Events can have templates – complete with icon and color choices – and categories associated with them and UK’s Kalender supports recurring and multiday events. Tool tips, when hovering over events, show the complete event information.

Double clicking inside any day or in the to do list triggers the window to enter the details of an event and choose its looks, start date, end date, alarm settings and for the to do list also its priority setting. Both the to do list and calendar events also support attachments which will be opened or executed with the event and therefore turn UK’s Kalender into an automatic task scheduler.

UK’s Kalender has a useful search and filter function to pin down specific events, it can do text back ups and export to a comma separated value (*.CSV) file or an HTML file. It supports holiday information via additional downloads. It runs on Windows 98SE up to Windows 7.

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Nov 112010
 


P2Do is a lightweight to do and task list that also provides a monthly calendar view in addition to its main list view. Tasks can be added and placed into categories and assigned tags or subcategories. After adding a task double clicking its entry in the list view will launch the window to add the aforementioned categories, tags or due date. Assigning priority and choosing icons are also done in the same window. The default and limited category and tag options (‘Main’ and ‘Relax’ just to name two) can be expanded within the program settings (lower left of the program interface) by adding one’s own.

The calendar view is capable of showing only tasks that are given a due date, at first thought this is perhaps a limitation but it is ultimately obvious why. It is also possible to search through tasks, P2Do should run on all recent versions of Windows and is available in both 32 and 64 bit versions and a portable version as well.

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