Google Offers Free Online Calendar
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Google now offers a free, web-based calendar service that enables users to access, manage and share appointments and deadlines in one place. While the service is free, a Google Account (also free) is required. Google Calendar, currently available only in English, was developed using the open iCal and XML standards, enabling other calendar applications to interact directly with Google Calendar. Key features include:

  • Ease of use: Events can be easily added the date and time when the event will take place and typing a brief description of the event. The calendar includes a natural language recognition feature (called Quick Add) that enables users to make entries without filling out cumbersome forms. The calendar also integrates with Google's free G-mail e-mail service. If users have a Gmail account, they can add events to their calendar with one click, if they see an "Add to Calendar" link automatically added to a message they receive that mentions an event.
  • One central location for calendar information: Users can see the calendars of their friends, clients, activity groups or other business contacts alongside their own schedules, making planning much easier. For example, they can view their personal calendar along with their family's calendar, and major U.S. holidays. Additionally, users can import calendars from other applications that support the iCal and CSV formats, and also search for public calendars on the web.
  • Sharing and publishing: Users have control over how much calendar information they share. They can keep their calendars private, share calendars with a small group of people, or make their calendars publicly available and searchable on the web. Event planning is a snap with the ability to send invitations and reminders using Google Calendar. Also, webmasters can add Google Calendar event reminder buttons to their pages, enabling their visitors to quickly add copies of events to Google Calendar. Attorneys could set up separate calendars for individual clients/matters to share deadlines court dates, etc. with the appropriate clients.
  • Staying connected: Users can set up automatic event reminders sent by email or text messages to their mobile phones to help them remember appointments. For Gmail users, Google Calendar connects to their Gmail contacts list, making it even easier to invite friends and family to events.

To read more about recent additions to Google's functionality, see these articles:

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