Woodstock Digital Media Festival

Woodstock Digital Media Festival program

Syncing Google Apps calendars with iOS 6

For some time I had been baffled why my new iPhone 5 did not include my all my Google Apps calendars, even though my old iPhone did.  I went through the standard synchronization process, and still only the main calendar showed up in the list.

After seeing that many people had the same problem, I tried a variety of suggestions and found that the following works.

Create a new Gmail account using the Google Apps credentials.  Turn off the Mail option in the account settings, but leave Calendars and optionally Notes on.  Contacts are not available, so we will create another account for that. Use the new Google “Syncselect” website (https://www.google.com/calendar/hosted/your_google_app_domain/syncselect) option to select the calendars that should be synced (Google support reference).  Only the calendars that are checked on this screen will be available in the Calendar app.

If you want to synchronize your Google Apps contacts with your iPhone, then create another Exchange account using Google Apps credentials.  Turn off the Calendar option, as that is handled above.  Turn on the Contacts option.  Turn Mail on or off depending on how you are handling your Google Apps email.  If on, then mail will show up in the iPhone Mail app, or turn off to use the Google Apps Mail shortcut app (which I prefer).

If This Then That

IFTTT logoThis is a relatively new app that allows you to connect other apps (or “channels”) using a simple programming logic.  It is all controlled by your iPhone.  For example, you can use it to connect WeMo devices, which are wifi-enabled power switches you can set up in your home.

You can also connect various online services like Facebook, Twitter, email, weather, Google, etc. and set up trigger actions.

Cosm logoFor what looks like a more generic, less user-friendly option, there is also Cosm – the new “Internet of Things”.  This allows connections to Arduino, an easy-to-program sensing device that connects to a network.

Copying Events from One Google Calendar to Another

From time to time, it is necessary to move events from one Google calendar to another.  Because the process is not obvious (and I can never remember exactly), I thought it would be helpful to have it here.

  1. Login to the Google account with the calendar that has the events you want to get.
  2. Go to the Calendar section.
  3. Click on the downward pointing triangle next to the calendar name that you want to copy, and select Calendar Settings from the pop-up menu.
  4. Click on the ICAL button next to Private Address.Google calendar ical export option
  5. This brings up a window with a complicated link that ends in “basic.ics”.
  6. Click on the link, and select the “Save file” option, and save to your desktop.
  7. Now close that Google calendar, logout, and login to the Google account that contains the calendar where you want to move the events.
  8. Go to the Calendar section.
  9. Click on the downward pointing triangle next to Other Calendars on the left, and select “Import Calendar”.  This opens Import Calendar window.
    Google calendar import step
  10. Click on the Browse button to select the file “Basic.ics” that was saved on your desktop.
  11. Click on the drop down to select the calendar that should receive the events.
  12. Click the Import button.
  13. The events should now all be copied over to the new calendar.

Email from FileMaker with Thunderbird

If Thunderbird is your email program, when you send email directly from FileMaker, it should open up Thunderbird with the target email address already filled in.

However, after doing a Windows Update, the default email program can be changed to Microsoft Outlook, and then the direct email from FileMaker no longer works.

To fix this problem in Windows XP, open up the Control Panel, and select Internet Options.

Control panel screen shot

Double-click on Internet Properties which should open the following window.  Select the “Programs” tab.

Internet Properties window

Change the selection next to E-mail to “Mozilla Thunderbird” as shown.  Click on the OK button to save the change.

You should now be able to send email directly to Thunderbird from FileMaker.