Power through schedules with 21 Google Calendar tricks

You can start the new year with even greater control and productivity thanks to these tips

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Connect your calendar with the world

19. Add calendars from around the Web

Google Calendar uses the iCalendar format, which makes sharing your calendars and subscribing to other people's calendars easy. If you plan your work hours around the Green Bay Packers, for instance, click the tiny arrow to the right of Other Calendars, and then choose Browse Interesting Calendars. Click the Sports option, and find your team. You can also search the Web for a topic that interests you, and add "ICS" or "ICAL" to the query. Among the results, you may find a webpage with an option for adding related events to your calendar. As long as you're signed in to your Google account, the option is just a click or two away. Return to the Other Calendars list to assign a hue to each calendar (click the tiny arrow next to any calendar in your list), so you can distinguish between them at a glance.

20. Schedule events from your social network Maybe you're already using Google+ for work, such as for holding videoconferences on Hangouts. If you've built up enough contacts on that network, it can come in handy for planning your big launch event. From your Google+ page, find the blank 'Share what's new' field and click the calendar icon to its right. Next, type the details of your event. (At this point, however, Google+ doesn't have natural language capabilities, so you can't just spell out "Fundraiser next Tuesday at 7pm.") Invite any or all of your contacts, or circles of contacts, in the 'Invite...' field. Before you click Invite, select a picture to dress up the event. You can also integrate Facebook events with Google Calendar: From your Facebook event, start by clicking Facebook's gear icon and choosing Export Events.

21. Share your calendar

Maybe your company is launching a weekly YouTube show, or the ink just dried on your book tour. Save your fans time by publishing such events, and making your calendar available to the public. Below your mini calendar, click the tiny arrow next to 'My calendars', and then choose Create a new calendar. Fill out all the fields, and select Share this calendar with others, then Make this calendar public. (If you prefer, you can limit the sharing here to individuals or groups at your company.) When you're done, add a link to your calendar from your website, and don't forget to share it on Facebook and Twitter: You can grab the embed code and the URL for your new calendar by visiting Settings from the menu that appears when you click the arrow next to the calendar.

This story, "Power through schedules with 21 Google Calendar tricks" was originally published by PCWorld.

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