MLA 13 Scheduling Tool

Every year it seems I wrestle with the annual meeting’s scheduling tool.  Perhaps I am too picky, asking it to do more than normal people would like or perhaps I am not savvy enough in the way of calendar apps.  Whatever the case, I always seem to have problems getting it to sync correctly.  So I thought I would share my experience this year in hopes that it might help others who might also be having problems.

I used Google Calendar synced to my iPhone.  I have synced Google Calendar to Androids and the practice is pretty much the same.  I don’t sync to my Outlook calendar, so I can’t help you there. If somebody wants to comment on how they did it in Outlook and any problems/tricks they found, that would be helpful.

I signed into the scheduler using my Facebook.  I admit I did it because I am lazy and didn’t want to try and remember another ID and password for a one time event, plus it is kind of nice seeing my picture and other librarian pictures next to events.

I clicked the star for every event I plan to attend.  I found information (abstracts or other details) on most of the events if I hovered over them.  Those that didn’t have abstracts when I hovered, included a link for me to get more information.  I discovered there is no way to add events that are not on the official MLA Scheduling Tool.  The only way I have been able to do this is to put the added event into my Google Calendar.

Speaking of Google Calendar and exporting.  I clicked on the Facebook and Twitter icons to see what exporting would happen.  Facebook did nothing, it didn’t post to my timeline or anything.  Clicking on the Twitter badge sends out a generic tweet for people to check the scheduler with a link to the scheduler.  (Both the Facebook icon and Twitter icon are kind of useless IMHO.)  Clicking on the phone icon gives me the option to use their mobile web app to view your schedule or to download your schedule into iCal for Google Calendar, Outlook and Apple iCal. 

I downloaded it for Google Calendar to my KraftyLibrarian Google account.  (I have a personal Google Calendar with my entire family life on it and I don’t want my MLA schedule cluttering the family calendar and vice versa.)  The import goes fairly easily, but it Google treats the scheduler calendar as a imported calendar that you can’t edit.  So if you want to add any events you have to add them to your home calendar (in my case KraftyLibrarian calendar) and they will show up in a different color and under that calendar. 

Because it is an imported calendar you will also have to sync it to your mobile device’s calendar. If you are following multiple calendars then make sure you scroll down for the link to syncing multiple calendars. Thank you @dearbeth on Twitter for the link to syncing it to my phone.

Once I was able to sync it to my phone I was able to see everything I needed and add additional MLA personal events (to the non-mla calendar) to show up on on my phone’s calendar to keep me on track for the meeting. 

Anybody else have any tips or tricks?

4 thoughts on “MLA 13 Scheduling Tool”

  1. I returned to the Scheduling Tool today to find out that paper and poster abstracts are now integrated in the program; however, I don’t see how I can make a preselection of individual presentations. I think we could add those last year to our personal schedule; it was very useful to manage session conflicts and identify specific posters we wished to visit. On the other hand, I had no trouble at all syncing with my Outlook calendar on my Android phone.

  2. Had the same experience. Had to copy everything over to my personal google calendar from the subscribed tool calendar so I could edit the individual events. (Posters I want to see, comments, etc.)

  3. I just managed to get the data into my IPad calendar. It was a battle. Syncing the app itself didn’t work, so I did the “one time” input, and that worked. I’m not keen on this product, and I agree, I struggle with the tool they select each year.

  4. The biggest problem I had was the Google calendar import issue Patricia mentioned. She wrote it succinctly, so I’ll just reiterate her comment:

    “The import goes fairly easily, but it Google treats the scheduler calendar as a imported calendar that you can’t edit.”

    After wrangling with this for a while, I finally decided that this issue kind of reflects a lack of sophistication I didn’t have time to work through (much as I do love puzzles).

    So, I gave up on using the scheduler provided for this year’s conference; but I’ll look forward to trying out whatever’s offered next time.

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