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Creating and Managing iCal Events in Mac OS X Lion

iCal is a handy scheduling tool found in Mac OS X Lion, and if you make a habit of recording appointments and things to do in iCal, you’ll almost never forget them. It offers multiple color-coded calendars, several types of reminder alerts, repeating event scheduling, and more.

The heart of OS X Lion iCal is the event. To create a new one, follow these steps:

  1. Choose File→New Event, press Command+N, double-click, or click and drag up or down anywhere on the calendar.

    If you double-click or click and drag on the day of the event, you can skip Step 2, and you don’t need to specify the date in Step 3.

    Alternatively, try Lion’s new Create Quick Event (+) button. It’s smart enough to interpret commands like “Family Movie at 7PM on Thursday” and create a new event on Thursday at 7 p.m.

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  2. If the event doesn’t appear in the proper place, just click it and drag it wherever you like.

  3. To edit an event, select it and then choose Edit→Edit Event, press Command+E, or double-click it to open its event bubble.

    All the items with little arrows on their right sides are pop-up menus.

  4. When you’re satisfied with all of the event’s items, click the Done button.

If you prefer working in a little window rather than the event bubble, check out the Edit→Show Inspector command (Command+Option+I), which displays the selected event in a window. Click a different event, and its info instantly fills the Inspector window.

The difference is that the Inspector window changes contextually and displays information about the currently selected event. Get Info windows, on the other hand, display info for a specific event. Put another way, a Get Info window displays the info for a specific event, and you can have as many Get Info windows on the screen as you like. There’s only one Inspector window; it displays info for whichever event is currently selected.

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