iCal: Share calendars

iCal: Share calendars
Mac Tip #166/29-Sept-2004

Last week’s Tip was about downloading calendars other people have created, but you might also want to share calendars of your own. This could work well if you are part of a group such as a Bridge Club or Dance Class, or perhaps you want to coordinate your timetable with family members or friends.

First create your calendar — my example will be called DogSports, a fictitious group who get together to exercise their dogs with sporting and obedience activities. Once I have my DogSports calendar set up and I’ve entered a few of our planned activities I select it and go to the Calendar menu where I choose Publish…

If you’re a .Mac subscriber you can choose to publish your calendar there, but if you aren’t then there are other services available. One is the free SpyMac.com, which also offers free email, hosting for photos, a blog and other services. [Edited June 2007 to remove the links to SpyMac. A recent visit to that site has left me unhappy with its apparent content, and the calendar referenced below is well out of date, and probably gone.]

In the Publish dialog box fill in the settings and click the Publish button. After a few moments you should receive a message that it worked and offering to let you email the address.

My fictitious DogSports calendar was at: webcal://mirazj.spymac.net:81/ical/DogSports.ics or see it as a web page. [Link removed]

There are three events: Monday 27 September 2004, Wednesday 29th and Friday 1 October.

Note that you can choose whether to make your calendar public, so anyone in the world can use it, or private. If you make it private then only those to whom you’ve issued a password will be able to view it or download it.

This can be an invaluable tool for any group of people, so go ahead and give it a try. Download a shared calendar (you can delete it again in an instant — just select it in your list of Calendars and press Delete) and see how it works.

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