Some problems just seem to get harder the longer we work on them. Take keeping track of appointments, for example: you’d think by now we’d have that one all figured out. But somehow, between being online and offline, having multiple computers and mobile devices, it’s become harder than ever to know where you’re supposed to be and when you’re supposed to be there. Some people have come up with elaborate schemes to keep all of their calendars synchronized, but as someone who has tried to do this across multiple computers and operating systems, I can tell you such things are tough to set up and prone to breakage.
Enter Calgoo. Currently in public beta test, Calgoo is a Java-based application that runs on Windows, OS X, or Linux. When you install Calgoo, it asks for your Google Calendar account information, and makes the calendars it finds there available for use in Calgoo. You can then use Calgoo as an offline client for Google Calendar, with periodic and on-demand synchronization when you’re back online. But beyond that, it also talks to Outlook on the PC and iCal on the Mac, making it a much more universal solution. If you like the location-independence of making Google Calendar your primary information repository, but still want a rich client and the security of having your information on your own box, you’re in Calgoo’s target market.
The Calgoo folks are also working to add value beyond simple calendar synchronization. Other features here include showing meeting locations on Google Maps, a task list (not synchronized with any other applications yet), and tagging and filtering options to help you manage truly cluttered calendars. The product is still definitely in beta (printing and the ability to invite Outlook contacts to a meeting are both missing, for example), but if you’re living a cross-platform life it shows definite promise for the future.