capsule review

Promising Prospect: FlexCal 1.0

At a Glance
  • Flexgames FlexCal 1.0

Many Mac users take advantage of Mac OS X’s iCal program for keeping calendars and tracking tasks. But a common request I hear is for a way to add new events and to-dos without having to actually launch iCal.

One solution is Flexgames’ FlexCal 1.0. Once installed, you simply press your FlexCal keyboard shortcut—which you choose in a new FlexCal pane in System Preferences—to bring up a small, floating window for entering a new task; press the shortcut again to switch to a new-event window.

FlexCal windows

While entering the details for your new task or event, the tab key moves between fields; pressing return creates the new task or event, allowing you use FlexCal without having to lift your hands from the keyboard—and without having to leave the program in which you’re currently working.

As convenient as FlexCal is, it’s still at version 1.0, which means it has room to grow. For example, during my testing I occasionally had to click in FlexCal’s window before I could start typing. In addition, you can’t paste text from the Clipboard into FlexCal; and certain features available in iCal—for example, choosing custom alarms—aren’t available in FlexCal’s event window. Finally, I found it annoying that there seems to be no logic behind the default date of new tasks and events.

Still, since installing FlexCal, I find myself rarely opening iCal to create events and tasks; I look forward to future versions for bug fixes and new features.

FlexCal 1.0 requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later.

At a Glance
  • Flexgames FlexCal 1.0

Shop Tech Products at Amazon