The online program planner for MLA 2014 is available.
Either I am getting used to working with the online planner or it is getting a lot better. Perhaps a little bit of both.
As we have noticed in the past, your browser could impact your experience with the program planner. So I want to let you all know that primarily I used Firefox 27.0 as my browser when I went to the planner site and logged in. I did also call up my schedule using Explorer 9.0 and Chrome 33.0 but I only called them up once I had selected things. While they displayed just fine in Explorer and Chrome I did not have the opportunity to play around with how it worked in those two browsers as I selected things.
Register first so that as you make selections it saves them to your account. Once you are done selecting events click on My Plan – Sessions, then you can download it as an iCalendar file which can be uploaded to your favorite calendar program. I use Google Calendar.
*Tip* Between 2 adults in a family with 3 kids, work schedules, other shared calendars, and other life events my Google Calendar has A LOT of information. So I don’t clutter up the rest of my calendar I created an MLA 2014 calendar under My calendars in Google Calendar. I gave it a really obnoxious purple color too so that it is obvious it is MLA stuff.
I imported the iCalendar file into my Google Calendar under MLA 2014 calendar and everything went in nicely in bright purple.
Things To Know:
- You need your registration badge to login every time. I understand this to verify meeting attendees to access the planner, but I do wish we could later change this to a customized password for use later. I will just get to know my badge number for a while.
- Posters are treated different than Sessions. I recommend first selecting all of the sessions you wish to attend (click the star) then go into posters (I personally like viewing them by Session Time) and select the posters. There is no way to get the posters to download as an iCalendar file to upload into your calendar. In the past I have put poster numbers in my calendar but it really clutters things up, I am experimenting with uploading them as an Excel file that I will save in Dropbox and call up as needed.
- You cannot add an events to the program planner that are not already on the site. In other words you cannot add that killer vendor party that you are dying to go to. HOWEVER, you can easily add the killer vendor party to your calendar. So after you have imported the program planner into your calendar of choice, go into your calendar and simply add that party yourself. I already did this in Google Calendar for a few after parties and it is easy. Hardest thing for me was to add it under my MLA 2014 calendar I created not my default calendar.
- If you are not in Central Time, then watch out for your calendar automatically switching times to “help” you. I wish I could give you pointers on how to make sure this doesn’t happen but I am only successful at preventing this about 50% of the time. I am able to fix it once it happens but it usually involves some swearing and random troubleshooting. Perhaps somebody will leave a comment as to how to prevent this problem. I only bring it up so that you are aware.
- Sync your calendar one last time before you leave for the meeting. I noticed that some of the sessions I want to attend don’t have room names yet. I know that information will come. The main reason I am already fussing with the program planner is to figure out any conflicting sessions.
- Finally, don’t be afraid to chuck your schedule at MLA. If you are having a great in depth conversation with a vendor or librarian then feel free to stick with it and not run off to the next session. If you are dog tired and need to take a nap during the middle of the day so you can finish out strong…sleep away. I see way too many people with their heads buried in their planners running to the next meeting. The programs, meetings, and posters are important, but it is also important to stop and smell the roses or talk to somebody. Another big part of MLA is the people and if you are busy running off to every event, you miss the people.
See you in May.