Copy iCal event information

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Have you ever wanted to capture the basics of an iCal appointment—title, date and time, location, and notes—for use in another application? If you drag an iCal event to the desktop (or other location in the Finder), you’ll wind up with a .ics file. While this can be useful for sending to people, it’s not so useful if you wanted some actual text about the event to use elsewhere.

There are two simple ways to get a textual summary of a given iCal event. In iCal, select the event and then use Edit -> Copy to copy it. Switch to the destination application—a new message in Mail, a TextEdit document, or what have you—and then use Edit -> Paste (Command-V) to paste the copied event. What you’ll get will look something like this:

Meeting with the boss
scheduled July 5, 2007 from 8:30 AM to 10:00 AM
Location: Big Kahuna Conference Room
Remember to explain why the project delay isn’t your fault!

While not perfectly formatted, it’s certainly more than good enough for e-mailing to a friend or coworker (though you may want to remove any notes first). You can even copy and paste multiple events—just hold down the Command key to select multiple events, copy, and then paste. You’ll have to manually insert a line break between each event, as that seems to get lost in the process.

If you’re more of a mouse user than a keyboard user, you can also do all this via drag-and drop-directly from iCal to another application.

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