Wednesday, 18 February 2009

A Google Tool

I followed up a suggestion on another blog (EKF) and tried using Google calendar. I see its attractions, but I don't think I'll be using it regularly. The main reason for this is that I commute quite a distance into work, and often use this time for planning: in the morning, to preview my timetable for the day, prioritise tasks etc.; in the evening to review how things have gone and decide what I need to pack for the next day.

These simple tasks can easily be done using an old-fashioned paper diary and notebook; and it would actually be quite hard to do them electronically, since I don't have reliable access to the Net while I'm travelling. Keeping more than one diary leads inevitably to ambiguity and confusion (as I've found in the past when I tried to use a hard-copy diary alongside the calendar on my PDA). So Google calendar, I suspect, is not for me.

Conclusion: electronic tools can be marvellous and really improve your life, but you need to be sure they truly fit your needs. In some cases, the old-style technology can still be more efficient.


  1. I, on the other hand, couldn't do without it, especially the facility to have multiple calendars. I've got one with my teaching timetable, which is public (see bottom of my blog), one for my other stuff, one for the kids' activities (they have a busier social diary than me!), and various other ones. The kids' one is shared with my wife, so we can add things, and both know about it.

    But I agree that there's a problem when you're not on-line. Hopefully wifi coverage will improve over the coming years...

  2. Yes, I do see that if you're sharing a diary this would be an ideal way of managing it. I can get away with having just one diary, just for me, and for that the paper kind works just fine. In the past I've experimented with using both the PDA calendar I mentioned earlier and also the equivalent function on my IPod. But I always come back to the paper diary in the end. (What a Luddite I sound!)

  3. Go with what works for you! Good that the Medieval HelpDesk is there for any technical difficulties, though ;)

    Before I went fully electronic with my clever always-connected phone, I took to using the pocket mod, which I just adored using!

  4. I too adore Google Calendar, synced, in a rather elaborate daisy chain, with my iPhone. So I have it offline as well. But, as all the productivity pundits say, use what works best for you.