By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail. Ben Franklin hit the nail on the head when impressing the importance of organization. Keeping a track of your time and planning ahead for the day’s activities can help you be optimally productive. Calendars have always been a mainstay in tracking major events, as well as planning for the future.
Up until about twenty years ago, a calendar was merely a paper item stuck on the wall, bound inside pages of a diary or neatly placed on your desk taking note of important dates, events and appointments. Important events, appointments and days were subsequently recorded manually. The dates on the paper calendar are arrayed in columns or as grids with a small matrix of boxes allowing the user to record appointments in sometimes tiny and illegible handwriting.
Subsequent innovations to make calendars interactive led to the inventions of modern-day digital calendars such as spreadsheets, Microsoft Outlook, Blackberrys, Palm PDAs, iPads, Mozilla Thunderbird and Google calendar. These calendars take the organization to the next level and help users stay as up to date as possible when it comes to the day’s events.
The need for a time tracking device was recognized quite early in man’s history. Ancient man is thought to have tracked the days by use of the sun, in order to know when and where to find food or plant primitive crops.
The first scientific calendar to be used was the Egyptian calendar, which had 12 months in a year and 30 days in each month. Then in 45 BC, Romans adopted the Julian calendar, which had 355 days and 30 or 31 days in each month. Later the Gregorian calendar was introduced in 1582, and after a series of changes and modifications, became the calendar we use today.
By the mid-’80s, people’s drive for something more useful than a paper calendar became evident. Paper calendars were cumbersome and didn’t work for you, or even with you. You worked at it. Electronics were tried in various ways to augment the basic calendar. In 1979 Alfred B. Levine described a simple interface that allowed users to record and store future appointments and events. The interface had the ability to edit, delete and recall the records using a computer keyboard as input. This feature was later introduced on PDAs and other portable devices like Lexicon LK 3000.
With the introduction of groupware software (or software that enhances a team working experience by aiding communication in a collaborative way), usefulness and subsequently the importance of electronic calendar increased exponentially. It also influenced the design and functionality of PDAs and ultimately the mobile devices we use today.
With the advent of Web 2.0 technology, social translucency and the mash-up of different technologies, electronic calendaring advanced even further. Today, most mobile phones have calendaring capabilities with the ability to synchronize with a desktop calendar, a friend’s calendar, or an employee’s calendar by storing the information on the cloud. This makes the digital calendar extremely versatile and exponentially more useful than its predecessors.
An electronic calendar helps in managing your meetings and appointments and also shares your schedule with others. Some of the best features include:
Today’s calendars are extremely versatile and can meet a variety of needs. So, how can you maximize your calendars functions?
The evolution of the calendar into the digital version we all know today has contributed to our productiveness as a society. We can operate more efficiently, and there’s no limit to how high we can climb with the assistance of our digital calendars.