Datebook Server

Path: accessible via /dates/index.html


Sample Output: DateServ Default Page

DateServ makes items in your Dates database available over the WWW in a number of formats. To do this, it reads directly from the Dates soup, so any 3rd party applications that alter or extend the Dates application may cause you problems. However, there are no reports of major conflict so forge ahead!

DateServ supports two modes of access:

  1. A direct path to your day's and week's agenda
  2. A forms-based query that returns any range of dates up to 31 days in length.

The paths to the day and week view are, respectively, /dates/day.html and /dates/week.html The reason these items are pre-specified is to allow DateServ to pre-cache them when NPDS starts up. This minimizes time required for a request for these items to be served.

Using Direct Path Access:

Example: You want to link to your weekly agenda from a page in your Notepad. You'd insert this HTML code
<A HREF="/dates/week.html">Weekly Agenda</A>
somewhere in that note.

A Special SSI Tag:

Speaking of embedding things, you can also directly embed the Daily Agenda (as a table) by using the <AGENDA_DAY> Server Side Include under Notepad Server. When the note containing this tag is served up, a table containing the day's agenda will be inserted into the note's HTML.

Configuring DateServ:

  1. Week Length: The week overview returned by DateServ is configurable. Open DateServ in the Extras Drawer and you'll see that you can select which day of the week is the "First" day of the week view and you can set the length of the week returned as well. I like to set it to a 6 day week starting on Monday so that my day off (Sunday) is hidden from view.
  2. Event Classes: Although my schedule is an open book, you may prefer NOT to show Events, Meetings, or ToDo's. You may select each class of Calendar entry for WWW display by tapping in the appropriate checkboxes. Note that turning off any Calendar event class turns off ALL instances of that class. There is no support for filtering by priority, folder, store, etc at present.
  3. Meeting Length: Since some people's meetings are indefinite in length, you may choose to NOT show the end time for meetings by de-selecting Show Duration under the Show Meetings checkbox.
  4. Use Javascript: You'll notice that when you click on a meeting or event, you get a nice little pop-up windoid with the pertinent information for that event. If, due to personal preference or security restrictions you do not wish to use this function, de-select this box.
    Clicking on links to your Datebook entries will then simply open new browser windows without use of Javascript.
  5. Use Pre-Caching: On a MP130 or a fast Newt with a lot of events, you may want to pre-create the day and week overview and store them in the cache after they are accessed so that they are accessible more readily. These files usually take up about 1 and 4 K respectively and are removed when they expire (usually 30 minutes to an hour).
  6. Active: NPDS Plugins are dynamically loadable/unloadable. If you wish to turn on or off service of Dates data, open DateServ and de-check this box. To turn Dates back on, re-check it. You no longer need to freeze most NPDS plugins to de-activate them.

FAQ for DateServ:

Q: I just added a meeting to this week's schedule and it hasn't shown up yet. Why?

A: The daily and weekly overview are cached files. Your new event will show up in an hour or so after the cached version of day.html or week.html has expired.

Q: How can I prevent access to my Dates data from outside my intranet, LAN, etc?

A: At present you cannot. However, though NPDS 2.0 has barely shipped, the next version of NPDS will support basic password protection and IP range restriction for enhanced security of you sensitive data.

Q: Can I post to the Datebok from the Web?

A: Not yet. I decided to wait for better security before implementing this feature in a publicly available package. MY Newton allows posting via the web ;-)

Q: Can I change the format of DateServ's output?

A: No, but if you're enterprising you can hack the source any way you want. The HTML templates and constructor scripts are well delimited and fairly modular.

Q: Do you have any support for MoreInfo?

A: No. I can't do it without reverse engineering the MoreInfo software which is not legal. Silverware is welcome to add support to the DateServ source for its product.