đź“— Calendar Manual

Content

1. Introduction

2. General instructions

3. Using the different calendars

4. Design rationale


1. Introduction

So far, we use Google Calendar to coordinate event appointments, milestone dates and task deadlines in our company. It is not obligatory to use this as your calendar system if you keep track of project milestones and your Dynalist task deadlines in another way. The only “obligatory” part is to receive event notifications for events in the “Edgeryders Events” calendar, and to respond accordingly; that’s covered once people know your Google Account e-mail address.

All our calendars are non-public, but those with access all have the highest level of access. That’s why these calendars are listed under your “My calendars” section and not under “Other calendars”.

Currently, the following people have access:

2. General instructions

2.1. Getting started with Google Calendar

  1. Log in. Log in to Google Calendar with your Google Account.

  2. Make timezone settings. Go to “:gear: → Settings → General → Time zone” and make sure your primary timezone is correct. Enable “Ask to update my primary time zone to current location” if you’re travelling frequently, and the world clock etc. if you like.

  3. Get calendar access. If the left sidebar does not list the calendars “Edgeryders Events”, “Edgeryders Milestones” and “Edgeryders Tasks”, ask anyone who has access to share them with you. Preferably ask people via Riot chat.

    Note, in 2018-10 we had some issues with sharing calendar access – sometimes the target account would still not have the calendars listed in their sidebar, and not have access via direct links either. To work around that Google bug, it helped to remove the access rights and immediately add them again. This helped eventually, but had to be repeated up to four times in some cases.

2.2. Creating an event

When you have access to an Edgeryders calendar, you do so with full permissions. So you can add events to it and also change them:

  1. Click into the calendar view or click the bottom-right “+” button.

  2. Click “More details” to see the extended event editing form.

  3. Select the right calendar for your event: either “Edgeryders Events” or “Edgeryders Milestones”. (Items in “Edgeryders Tasks” should only be added via Dynalist.)

  4. Invite those as guests who you want to attend your event resp. for whom the milestone is relevant. This allows them to see it in their personal Google Calendar, and to receive notifications.

  5. Adjust the notification settings as suitable for the event.

For more details about creating events, see here.

2.3. Creating an event for a Zoom meeting

These events should go into the “Edgeryders Events” calendar. See our Zoom Video Conferencing Manual for how to create them.

2.4. Direct links to the calendars

It is best to view these calendars inside the Google Calendar interface, because the embeddable versions listed below look different and lack several tools such as showing events from multiple calendars in one.

However, for reference, here are the IDs and public URLs of the Edgeryders calendars. (You still need somebody to share access with your Google Account before you can see them, see above.)

3. Using the different calendars

Find some “best practice” usage hints below.

3.1. Edgeryders Events

This contains all the appointments relevant in the Edgeryders OÜ company: everything that happens at a fixed date and time and location (or URL). For example community calls, director calls, LOTE conferences etc…

  • Use it to create Edgeryders events. Create events related to the Edgeryders OĂś company, such as conference calls, conferences, LOTEs etc. in this calendar, not in your personal calendar. Because in the latter case, only those invited to the specific event have a way to see that it exists, while in Edgeryders we prefer to keep everything as open as possible.

  • Add events as whole-day / multiple-day if their time is not yet fixed. The “events” calendar is meant to help with personal time planning of attendance, so it makes sense to register event even while details are vague, to block the time. So, enter it without time as a “full day event” and note in the title that the time will be announced later.

  • Normally no need to display. There is no need to always see all the Edgeryders Events, so by default uncheck the calendar in your left sidebar to not display these event until you want to see them all.

    (Explanation: You will receive the relevant invitations by e-mail anyway when somebody creates an event in this calendar. When you react to an invitation, the event automatically is displayed in your personal default Google Calendar. Displaying the whole Edgeryders Events calendar would display a second instance of that same event.)

3.2. Edgeryders Milestones

This contains the major milestones of the past and current Edgeryders projects. “Milestone” is used informally here to mean “important deadlines”, not “contract checkpoints”. This will help us be clearer on what’s going on and when.

  • Use this calendar for your project. While not obligatory, we encourage all project managers to add key events and milestones for their projects. @anique.yael has started this system and already listed all major deadlines and milestones for the Research Network’s Horizon2020 projects.

  • If it’s something to attend, it’s an event. And events should go into the “Edgeryders Events” calendar, to avoid redundancy.

  • Invite people for whom the milestone is relevant. This will display the milestone event also in their personal calendar, without creating a redundant copy that could get out of sync.

  • Take over relevant milestones into your personal calendar. Not all milestones are relevant to everyone. It seems best to use a “hack” to only see the milestones relevant to you: for a relevant milestone, invite yourself as an invited guest to that event. This will show the milestone in your personal, default Google Calendar, so you don’t need to display the whole “Edgeryders Milestones” calendar usually. Ideally, your project manager will invite you already when creating the milestone events.

  • Display on demand. Project manager will show this calendar (by checking it in the sidebar) during project planning work, but everyone else does not need to display it after taking over personally relevant milestones into the personal calendar.

3.3. Edgeryders Tasks

:warning: :warning: Do not yet rely on the Edgeryders Tasks dynalist being synced to this calendar. We found a bug in Dynalist that means this will succeed only for events added, deleted or changed by the Dynalist user having the Dynalist Pro subscription. We’re working with Dynalist staff to get this resolved asap. (@matthias, 2018-10-08)

The Edgeryders Tasks calendar contains all list items from the Edgeryders Tasks Dynalist document that have a date using the !(yyyy-mm-dd) expression in Dynalist. By convention, these dates represent deadlines up to which a task should be done.

  • Do not add events to this calendar manually. That would create a mess since people can’t see them in Dynalist where we keep all our tasks. This calendar is only for viewing; to add something, add it in Dynalist and wait for it to be synced.

  • How synchronization works. Dynalist Pro has a feature that you can enable per document and that synchronizes list items with dates to a single, selected Google Calendar. Synchronization happens every minute but might sometimes take 2-4 minutes – if the item does not appear in the Google calendar after 10 minutes though, something is wrong. Synchronization happens only from Dynalist to Google Calendar: items you add, change or delete in Dynalist will be added, changed or deleted in Google Calendar, but not vice versa. So when you delete an event in Google Calendar, the corresponding item in Dynalist will stay in place. (The event in Google Calendar will however not be re-created from Dynalist, except when you edit the corresponding Dynalist item.)

  • How to show your upcoming deadlines. There are two comfortable ways to show tasks with deadlines relevant for you:

    • Select “Schedule” in the top-right dropdown (or press A), while only displaying events from this calendar. This will display everyone’s deadlines, and you can then highlight yours by searching in the page (Ctrl + F) for your Dynalist task assignment tag #username.

    • Search for your Dynalist task assignment tag #username. This is not that useful as Google Calendar ignores special characters in search terms and does not have search operators, it searches for username instead, in both the event title and description. So it’s only a pre-filter and you still have to highlight your tasks by searching in the page (Ctrl + F) for your Dynalist task assignment tag #username.

  • Send yourself reminders. For a flexible way to get e-mail notifications and audible in-browser notifications about your upcoming deadlines, invite yourself to the calendar event of a task assigned to you and configure the notifications in the event’s settings.

  • Display on demand. Display this when you want to get an overview of your (or others’) upcoming task deadlines. If you invite yourself to the events for your tasks, these events will also be displayed in your personal, default Google Calendar. So if you do this whenever Dynalist Companion notifies you of a new task with a deadline (see the Dynalist Manual chap. 4), there is no need to display the Edgeryders Tasks calendar.

  • Why do tasks have a full-color background? If you are wondering why events in this calendar are shown with a colored background in the calendar instead of the usual small colored bullet: because tasks are full-day events without an assigned time.

4. Design rationale

The principle idea in our use of Google Calendar was to (1) create different calendars for collections you want to display independently and (2) to use the invitation mechanism for adding calendar events to your personal calendar.

The latter will result in “duplicate” events – one in the personal calendar, one in the original one. This is slightly annoying, but there is at least no redundancy: when one of the two events changes its date or description, the other changes as well. The invitation mechanism is the only way to take over an individual event into your own calendar without creating a redundant copy, so we use it. The upside is that you don’t have to display the three Edgeryders calendars once you have taken over the relevant events into your own calendar. For the Edgeryders Events calendar, this mechanism yields a nice organization-wide calendar (where we can look up events even if we have not been invited to them).

For the Edgeryders Tasks calendar, creating the invitations for the task assignees can later by automated by our Dynalist Companion software. But that is only for later :slight_smile:

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@matthias Can you please make this post a wiki?

Done :slight_smile:

This function is a bit hidden and I saw that this was not yet documented, so I added it to the Website Manual (section 2.13.). So henceforth you can create your own wikis.

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I got the invite to the calendar, thanks!

For the internal meetings for i.e. PopRebel comm mgmt or NGI I suggest using the usual Edgeryders calendar, or none, because when you invite us and we accept it is added to our own calendars. As a Milestone calendar entry it just duplicates in our overall calendars… my 2 cents.

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Hear you @noemi.

For background, the reason @matthias and I agreed to set up a new calendar is that the existing one was not set up by edgeryders@gmail.com and limited edit access to the calendar for people like me (I could only view events for example). While I could have waited for the calendar owner - presumably you? - to give me access it seemed more appropriate that a team wide calendar be owned by the edgeryders gmail account. So the idea is that the old/ usual Edgeryders calendar is replaced with this, where all team members have full permissions and its owned by the edgeryders account. With the scaling we’re trying to simplify and consolidate planning. Make sense and do you agree?

As for double ups, yes I found that too and believe that’s because those who choose to subscribe to the calendar in their own and then are also invited to a meeting both events are displayed. I’d rather keep inviting people so they have it in their calendar but am also happy just to contact them to let them know of the meeting. We’ll see what works best in time I suppose.

Vunderbah, thank you!!

I see, makes sense. The old calendar was set up in 2012 :-)) Happy to delete it as we didnt use it much anyway.

Okay, whatever works best for you. I just thought that meetings are not the same as milestones, so having them outside of that calendar would be easier. Then there wont be duplicates and you invite people to the meeting, then it gets added to whatever calendars we each have for ER related stuff that is not milestones.
If the calendar is an all Edgeryders calendar , or ResNet calendar,… then makes sense.
Anyway, not a big deal, it should work for you since you’re coordinating.

Cool.

Although you make a fine point here:

And it’s also what works best for the teams. So let’s see, I feel like putting meetings in a central calendar makes sense, especially if they’re related to milestones (for example, the POPREBEL Grant Agreement). But sometimes that connection is not so clear. What might work better you think? We create meetings in our own calendars and invite attendees? I’d be willing to do this if people thinks it makes more sense.

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Ok I think I found the “right” way to do this calendar stuff. The principle is to (1) use different calendars for things that should be possible to hide and show independently and (2) to use the invitation mechanism for adding individual calendar items to the personal calendar.

This will result in “duplicate” events as observed by Noemi – one in the personal calendar, one in the original one – but at least they are still the same event: when one of the two changes its date or description, the other changes as well. The invitation mechanism is the only way to do this: taking over an individual event into the own calendar without creating a redundant copy.

If there are no strong reasons against it, I would implement and document it like this, and then we try to use it …

Edit: I have moved other details of the proposed system to the wiki at the start of the topic now, making this proposal “official”.

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Hello everyone … welcome to the new Edgeryders Calendar system. (Not mentioning everyone here, as I did that already in the wiki above, so I’m sure you’ll notice.)

However: @anique.yael, I had to make some changes to your calendar setup to avoid using the default calendar that is permanently tied to the edgeryders@gmail.com account. As a result, the link to the milestones calendar changes, but you’ll find the new one listed in your Google Calendar, and also a direct link above. From my side, the calendar setup is now complete. (Let me know how the system works for you and in case we have to improve something.)

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Oh my…it does work, if anything, it’s a lot!

I am turning some off because Tasks shows all tasks?

Thanks Matt for the work,

Another thing: I tried syncing the zoom meetings to Edgeryders calendar - but the default is Edgeryders (dont use). I tried deleting that calendar, but somehow it doesnt work (https://calendar.google.com/calendar/b/1/r/settings/calendar/ZWRnZXJ5ZGVyc0BnbWFpbC5jb20?tab=mc)

Edgeryders events should be our default calendar, then zoom stuff will show up in there.

Yes, all tasks that have a date assigned in Dynalist. (“Own tasks” is a concept we added to Dynalist using our own #username tag convention, so Dynalist knows nothing about which task is for whom until we get around to do some custom programming.)

See the instructions for how to only show your tasks, in the “Schedule” view or your own default calendar.

I finally figured it out :slight_smile: Zoom’s calendar integration can indeed only connect to a Google Account’s default calendar as you observed. But we do’t need that “calendar integration” feature at all, as it is only to view upcoming meetings in the Zoom desktop client. And for our Zoom Pro account, that already works without the calendar integration enabled since that account schedules the meetings. (I added details to our Zoom Video Conferencing Manual, section “3.3. Viewing upcoming meetings in the desktop client”.)

What we really want is the “Add to: Google Calendar” button when creating a Zoom meeting, or the equivalent when creating Zoom meetings with their browser extensions. In these cases, you can already choose that the meeting goes into our “Edgeryders Tasks” calendar. Again, I added detailed instructions for all of that to our Zoom Video Conferencing Manual.

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This is just fantastic @matthias. Thank you so much for getting it functioning so smoothly.

I’m not sure I follow this: [quote=“community_wiki, post:1, topic:9038”]
Don’t add events before their time is fixed. The “events” calendar is to look up details of upcoming appointments. So while a planned event is vague and its details may change, better only list it in the “Edgeryders Milestones” calendar and copy / move it to the Events calendar once it’s date and time are finalized. For example, a project’s kick-off meeting is a milestone, and additionally an event once it time and location have been fixed.
[/quote]

Are you saying you want milestones to be listed in both the Milestones and Events calendar?

Also: [quote=“community_wiki, post:1, topic:9038”]
(Explanation: You will receive the relevant invitations by e-mail anyway when somebody creates an event in this calendar. When you react to an invitation, the event automatically is displayed in your personal default Google Calendar. Displaying the whole Edgeryders Events calendar would display a second instance of that same event.)
[/quote]

Confirming we should invite colleagues we want to be at an event (and milestone as further down) so they have it in their calendar also. This is rather important for us all to note.

Noted. Right now my tasks seem to be syncing well FYI.

This is a little confusing for me and right now mine already seem set up - is that thanks to your magic having done it for me @matthias or @anu :blush: ?

LOVE this thank you!

[quote=“anique.yael, post:16, topic:9038”]> Don’t add events before their time is fixed.

Are you saying you want milestones to be listed in both the Milestones and Events calendar?[/quote]

Yes but that was a bad idea. Events should immediately go into “Edgeryders Events” and nowhere else, and time should be added to them once known. Changed it in the wiki above now.

Yes, important point that was not yet documented. Now I added it explicitly to the wiki instructions for creating an event. Without it, events would be pretty useless (in invitation messages, no reminder messages).

All the tasks in Dynalist that were present when I set up the system have been synced successfully, so I think that’s what you are seeing. Syncing new tasks from Dynalist to Google Calendar is what’s not working currently, except for changes made via Dynalist Pro user accounts.

These are instructions for how to filter the “Edgeryders Tasks” calendar to see what’s relevant for you. It does not need any setup steps – you have to do these steps every time you want to look through your task deadlines. Hope that makes it clear :slight_smile:

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