Saturday, February 05, 2005

Does Anybody Really Know What Day It Is?

Over on Slashdot they're having a discussion of Sunbird, Mozilla's new stand alone calendar program. I downloaded it, tried it, and found:

It can't be programmed to accept the fact that the fourth Thursday of the eleventh month is a holiday.

It also can't figure out when Easter is, either, but I've given up on finding a calendar which will do that. emacs has calendars for every religion and culture known to man, but hey, put that in a modern calendar program? What do you want, anyway?

My favorite calendar program for X was called ical. No, not the ical you're thinking of, this is a different one. It was originally on Sanjay Ghemawat's page, but as you'll see, that page ain't there anymore. Fortunately, Tom Bennet has updated the old RedHat RPMs for ical, and released them to the public. I took the Fedora Core 2 SRPM and got it to install. Of course, first I had to install the tcl-devel and tk-devel packages, but that was easy, as they're in the original Fedora Core 3 installaton and so accessible via yum. Once I did that, the program worked just as I remembered it from old versions of RedHat.

If you need a relatively lightweight calendar program, don't mind that it's format isn't very compatible with anything else, and like the fact that it can figure out that the third Monday in February is President's Day (US), then try this version of ical.

Now could someone come up with a 100-year file of the dates of Easter and the related moveable feasts? You could start here. Or maybe pilfer the code from emacs.