A free time management web application offered by Google is in the form of Google Calendar, and it is a pretty good one at that. It was started in April 2006. The user needs to have a Google account to use this software.
Google calendar software was designed by Kevin Fox who is the designer of Gmail. This web application is similar to the desk top calendar applications available in Microsoft Outlook, Mac OS X or Apple iCal. The interface is driven by Ajax and without reloading the page the users can view, drag and drop and add events from one date to another. Weekly plan view, monthly program calendar and agenda view modes are supported.
Standard English phrases can be used to update the events in the calendar. Tools that help to increase the functionality of utilities like Google Calendar are called plugins. Enthusiastic freelancers have developed application plugins for Google Calendar for WordPress interface which is one of the most user friendly and feature rich publishing platforms. These plugins can be customized and tailor made to suit the requirements of the users. WordPress is being used by millions of customers for their projects and commercial websites.
There are several WordPress plugins used in Google Calendar to make it more user friendly. The important and best WordPress plugins are listed below are selected based on their rating, number of downloads and experts’ recommendations:
All in One Event Calendar
Timely has developed this All in One Event Calendar plugin. With the help of this plugin, you can list all your events in to a single entity. It also allows the users to share them with anyone. This free new calendar plugin has been created with a powerful set of features and has clean visual design and strong architectural patterns. Three custom designed themes are offered which you can use to develop your own version. Some of the most important calendar features of this plugin are:
- Easy sharing
- Day, week, month and agenda views
- Google maps are embedded
- Widget for upcoming events
- Filtering option as per tag and category
- Recurring events
- Events are color-coded based on the category
This plugin is very useful as one event can be created and displayed on several calendars without extra work. It has additional features – each event can be SEO-optimized. Calendar can be rooted into a WordPress page without the creation of template files or modifying the theme of the event.
Google Calendar Events
Developed by Ross Hanney this plugin helps to parse Google Calendar feeds. The events are displayed as a calendar grid or as a page list, widget or post. You have the facility to retrieve exact number of events and also past events. If necessary change of month is allowed as the grids can have AJAX functionality. Some of useful Features of Google Calendar Events plugin include,
- Display of events as a list within the calendar grid
- Extraction of events and parsing on as Google Calendar feeds
- Presentation of the events from various Google Calendar feeds in to a single list
- Customization of event information as per the needs of the user
- Retrieval of various necessary events along with the facility for changing cache duration, date and time format
- Incorporation of change of month display by Calendar grids
Localendar Calendar for WordPress
This plugin was developed by Thomas Griffin of WordPress. This is a dedicated WordPress plugin. It has over 100 features and always displays full event titles. Localender helps you to easily to customize all the events planned by you on your site. For advanced users developer tools are provided to specially customize your programs. Some of the top features of the Localender are:
- Complete event title is displayed on all views
- Email and Twitter support to remind the events
- Improved “Repeating Event” functionality
- Calendars can be published in different time zones and in different languages
- For iCal based calendars, full export/import support
- Calendars can be merged
- Categories for custom event
- Provision for local weather forecast
- Search can be done within a calendar
- Has dominant WYSIWYG Theme Editor.
- Without retyping “boilerplate” text can be added to the events
Localendar also provides support for uploading your own clipart library or use of existing extensive downloadable clipart library. For creating detailed visual descriptions, you can add multiple images and clipart items to your events. Background images can be customized as per your choice.
Fast Secure Contact Form
This calendar plugin was developed by a freelance developer, Mike Challis. A webmaster can easily add and create contact forms to WordPress. The user can send contact form via email to the site’s admin and can send a meeting request. It has an easy admin panel, auto-responder and has no templates. The visitors can be redirected to any URL after the message is sent. Extra fields can be added for any type like text, checkbox, checkbox-multiple, radio, attachment, time, date etc. The salient features of the plugin include,
- Easy customizable options done from Admin settings page
- Allows having many forms as it has multi-form feature
- Sending mail to various departments is supported
- Option of redirecting to any URL after the message is sent
- Option to send posed data as a query string on the redirect URL
- Syntax of Email address is validated
- Facility of Auto form fill for logged in users
- Form field titles are customized
- Security is very tight and stops all automated spammers
- Filters all form inputs
- Works with WordPress 2.8+, WPMU and BuddyPress
This plugin was developed by another freelance developer, Sebaxtian. Kalendas uses the data from Google Calendar and displays one or all the calendars in the events list. It has been translated into French by InMotion Hosting Team. Some of the significant features include,
- Addition of Tags like Kalendas title, Feed that can be used to put an event list in posts or pages.
- Incorporation of Screenshots for an infogram to inform the user to explain the setting up of public calendar event and where to get the necessary XML feed.