Every so often this post I wrote in September of 2010 about digital calendar paradigms pops back up. (It features a horrible design mockup of a calendar app I would like to see for my Mac.) This go around I think I am going to blame Patrick Rhone for the article’s resurgence:
The thing is, for the most part, Calendar apps still really suck (maybe they suck more given how Calendar in Lion looks). Every time this post bubbles back up I get emails from developers that either want to develop the app I want (never seems to happen) or that think they have the app I want (they never do). That’s fine and nice to see, but seeing this again reminded me that there is light at the end of this tunnel.
No, there’s still no perfect OS X calendar app — hell not even a good iPad one — but we are getting damned close on the iPhone. This near perfection comes in the form of one app and one iOS system level service working in harmony: Agenda and Siri.
Since I received my first beta invite to test Agenda, I fell in love with it. For me Agenda perfectly encapsulates what I need in an iPhone calendar app: showing me what’s next.
Agenda excels at this.
For the longest time my main complaint about Agenda was that it was still very cumbersome to enter in a new appointment, but Siri changed that. Now I can just speak my appointment at my iPhone and it shows up in Agenda (even though Siri just inputs it into the Calendar app). It’s a solution that works surprisingly.
So well in fact, that I do 95% of all my calendaring in Agenda on my iPhone — even when my hands are already on my keyboard.
If you are still having problems with finding a good calendaring app — give Agenda a try and forget about calendaring on your Mac or iPad.
Seriously, forget about it.
For Those of You That Just Ignored That Advice
Ok, so you just ignored me and want to know what I use on my iPad and Mac — because I must have something better than you, right? Well, I don’t.
On my iPad I use Agenda (recently switching for the nicely polished Calvetica) simply because it is the lesser of two evils. I don’t love Agenda’s UI on the iPad — I think it is a bad balance between too sparse and to cluttered, if that makes sense. 1 In my opinion I have yet to see anyone create a calendar app2 for the iPad that properly utilizes the iPad screen size — I’d be happy to be proven wrong.
So for those of you that loathe all the digital calendar solutions: I hear you. But I bet you would be pretty happy with Agenda on your iPhone 4S (so you can get Siri) and ditching the thought of using a Mac calendar app for anything more than creating the odd new appointment. That solution really has worked out well for me.