Panasonic Youth

Ajax calendars, responding to Joel and alwaysBeta

Joel has some pretty crazy requirements for a calendar. I don’t know of any calendar that can record the start time and end time for an appointment in different time zones - can Outlook do this? It seems like it wouldn’t be too bad to just figure out the time change manually and put in the correct times yourself, but I imagine this would get annoying for people who are flying constantly. But not more annoying then doing it manually in a word doc that you have to print or email to yourself anyways. His other complains have merit, though I see that reminders are coming soon for 30 boxes.

More generally, I think Joel overestimates the importance of the Marimba effect in capturing the attention of early adopters. Granted, there are some pretty big features missing from a lot of these services at launch. However, if a site like 30 boxes can keep Scoble and Michael coming back, that means they’ll have continued publicity and positive word of mouth as they add features and improve things. Joel may not check it out again, but I’m guessing a lot of the thousands of readers that the big name bloggers have will. Also, I can’t imagine 30 boxes spent a ton of cash getting the blog-driven buzz they’ve had, so its not like it was a ton of funding down the drain.

The guys at the very cool and very new group blog alwaysBeta think 30 boxes “seems kinda silly”. I’ve used 30 boxes since monday and so far it seems promising, though its still pretty early to tell if it will really become a regular part of my workflow. The integration with upcoming, flickr, and basically any rss feed is definitely cool. Anyways, I’m just going to respond point by point:

Most months don’t have 30 days in them

Who cares. Its just a name, its meant to be catchy and be easy to remember, not accurate across all months.

Who is their target market? Almost everyone who has a “real job uses Outlook [or Lotus Notes]

The market is everyone who uses Outlook or Lotus Notes at work, and then struggles to find a way to sync that with calendars at home or “web 1.0” calendars like Yahoo’s. This is a large market as the line between work and play increasingly blurs. I want to know that I have an 8 am meeting on Thursday and that I’m attending a Ruby user group that night and then going out with friends afterwards - and I want it all on the same calendar. My mindset for scheduling stuff doesn’t have two modes for “work” and “non-work”, so why have calendars that work like that?

If any of these new tools can do one click sync with Outlook and the other popular desktop apps, it will be golden. And by one click I don’t mean exporting outlook to a csv file, importing that into 30 boxes, doing some sort of reverse sync, etc.

Social features do you no good without a community.

Right, but the community will come if they built a really good calendar. The integration with all sorts of other web services is a big plus if they keep on top of it and add popular ones as they come up.

Strange choice of features.

I’m not going to argue with this one. The UI is a bit odd in places, and things still feel rough around the edges. I’m hoping this improves, because 30 boxes seems like the most promising candidate so far.

Basically, I am tired of duplicating appointments across three different places. We need a solution where I don’t have to duplicate work, and I’m hoping one of these new calendars will win out.