Since 2004 the Veggies/Sumac Diary system has promoted well over 2000 events, creating diaries for 4 separate projects (including the UK Animal Rights Calendar and the UK Vegan Outreach Diary).

Meanwhile the web has moved on and the php/mysql system has outgrown it’s use. However any replacement needs to be submitted to the same intense level of field testing before it can replace the current calendars.

There is a working demo of a proposed new system.

Highlights include:

  • Recurring events projected ahead
  • Filtering by event category or tag
  • Calendar style and agenda (list) views
  • Direct url links for filtered calendar views
  • Embedded Google Maps
  • Upcoming Events widget
  • Potential for mobile apps
  • Buttons to email, tweet or print details
  • Logins for users, groups or guests to submit and edit event details
  • Easy sharing with iCalendar (.ics) feeds to Google Calendar, Apple iCal, etc
  • Entire calendar, or filtered extracts, may be plugged into other group’s websites

We are particularly impressed with the listing views, the filter options and the ability to add re-occurring events in a variety of ways.

Help button

Help us test and create the new Calendar

Please submit dates to the proposed new calendar (right click to open in a new tab).

You might wish to send feedback about how you get on. This will help use improve the system, and these notes.

This is what you do:

Log-in as a ‘Guest’ / password ‘Guest’. Right click to open in a new tab so that you can refer to these guidance notes, although it would be good to know how intuitive the process is for those that are familiar with systems like this.

You should only have to follow these note once or twice; regular users should soon become familiar with the format and options.

Hover over ‘+ New’ at top of page & click ‘event’ from the drop down menu. The submissions form will now appear.

Enter the Event Heading into the box at the top

Enter the description of the event into the text box below the Tool Bar. You can choose to enter data in the ‘Visual’ (what you see is what you get) or in HTML format. Or switch between the two at any time.

If appropriate include any website links in the description, for example “For further details visit the website” with the website address linked from this text.

This is done using the [link] button on the tool bar. This looks like a chain link and is labeled “insert/edit link” when hovered over.

  • With the mouse select the text that you wish to link
  • Click the [link] button on the tool bar
  • Type or paste in the website address into the url field (be sure to include ‘http://’)
  • Type in an (optional) title, which will pop up when visitors hover over your link
  • Do not tick the box to open link in a new window, except in special circumstances.

Ignore the ‘Discussion’ section and the ‘Custom Fields’.

Fill in Event Date and Time Info
(Tip: we need an option for a start time without an end time and for ‘no specified time’, meanwhile putting the same end time as the start time displays just the start time on the event listing).

Fill in the Event Location Details
(Tip: you have the choice of whether to use the embedded Google Map, or not. Sometimes a postcode rather than an address gives a better result. You might prefer to put directions into the description field).

Add Organiser Contact Info

  • Enter the name of the organising group alongside ‘Contact name.
  • Enter a phone number / or two.

We are working on protecting email addresses from spammers by offering a contact form (coming soon). Email addresses are therefore not displayed.

To supply an email address to contact event organisers, select ‘contact_email’ from the Custom Fields section. (Do not use the one labeled ‘Contact Email’, this relates to another project).

If your own email address is different from that associated with the event, select ‘user_email’ in the Custom Fields section. This address will not be displayed but can be used to notify you when your event is reviewed and accepted.

Do not be tempted to use other options from the Custom Fields, they are associated with other projects and are not supported by this calendar.

Scroll back up to the top and, on the right of the page, select all the relevant categories (or none).

The development team has not yet discussed how best to use ‘Event Tags’. Perhaps ignore them unless you are familiar with the use of Tags.

Finally a word about images:

In HTML mode only copy this code in front of the beginning of the description text:

<a href="your image url"><img alt="your alt text" src="your image url" title="your title txt" class="alignleft" width="200"></a>

Find an image that you wish to use elsewhere on the web. Right click over the image to ‘copy image location’ to the clipboard, then paste it into the code where indicated (twice).

Where indicated type in text describing the image:

  • The ‘title’ is text that pops up when a visitor hovers over the image.
  • ‘alt’ refers to Alternate Text, which appears in place of a missing image, or is read out to visually impaired visitors. (May be the same as the title)

If you are a registered User, you can use an ‘Upload/insert’ icon above the tool bar to handle images more dynamically.

Now press the [Save Draft] button, followed by [preview]. A preview of your event should appear in a new tab. This is a good time to check that any website links work properly. (If the preview tries to overwrite the submissions form go back an write click the Preview button to select a new tab).

Return to the form to make any changes and Preview again. When everything looks good click the [Submit] button.

As a Guest Contributor your event has now been submitted, but will not yet be ‘live’. It will appear as soon as it has been reviewed and we’ll let you know via the user_email or contact_email addresses that you have provided. If you with you are welcome to to let us know that you have submitted an event.