Although there are nice apps that display calendar events and to-dos on a jailbroken iPhone lockscreen, those of us who aren't jailbroken lack a feature that, in my opinion, is a huge oversight. If you're like me and not good at checking your to-dos and calendar regularly, you may find this helpful albeit not terribly elegant.
You will need an 'always on' computer somewhere that can act as a server. I am running Snow Leopard on mine. Then you need a Unix application that runs in terminal called icalBuddy
. This command can extract events and to-dos from iCal. See the instructions for icalBuddy as it is very customizable. I use icalBuddy to extract the next two days of events from specific calendars.
Next create a workflow in Automator, and save it as an application. You can use icalBuddy to get your to-dos in addition to events, but Automator is pretty good at getting to-dos on its own, so thats's what I use.
Create a TextEdit document. I call it 'reminder list.' The Automator workflow looks something like this:
Get Specified Finder Items "reminder list"-->
Run Shell Script "icalBuddy" (this will run icalBuddy in terminal and you need to put in your customization here eg /Users/Desktop//icalBuddy-v1/icalBuddy -npn -nc -sd -b "" -eed -eep notes,url -sed -ss "" -tf %H%M -n -ps "|@ |" -ec Home,Work,My Holidays eventsToday+1)-->
Set contents of TextEdit Documents (by Replacing)-->
Get Specified Text "to-do:"-->
Set Contents of TextEdit Documents (By Appending [this will make a to-do: heading)-->
Find iCal To Dos (find to dos-customize as desired)-->
Set Contents of Text Document (by appending)-->
Get contents of Textedit document-->
New mail message-->
Send outgoing message
You will need an iPhone app that can display e-mail notifications. I use PushMail
. I e-mail the message directly to PushMail and it then displays as a notification on the iPhone. You can customize whether it's silent or with an alert etc. You will need some sort of schedule or trigger for the automator workflow. I have it set to trigger hourly. You can use any scheduler. Quickeys will work or you can use a terminal scheduler. I use MacScheduler which is a fairly decent GUI for setting up scheduled events that could also be done in terminal. You could also have iCal trigger this.
The e-mail should look something like this:
- meeting@ 3B CLASSROOM@ 1300
- Get Batteries
This is the basic setup. I have added another step in the process for customizing the output and getting it to work well with the character limitations of notifications (256 I think).
Instead of having Automator send the e-mail, I use Filemaker to automatically import the text file, reformat it and e-mail it. This is helpful if you have a lot of events and to-dos. You can customize the format and automatically abbreviate words and truncate entries. I can't go into details here, and I'm sure there are many software solutions that can be used for this.
After going through Filemaker it looks like this:
- [TODY: Mtg@ 3B ClsRm@ 1300]
- [TMRW: —]
- [to-do: Get Batteries]
Now, hourly the notification is pushed to me (silently) and will be there on the lockscreen or over whatever else the iPhone is currently doing. If you get other notifications it will replace the reminder notification obviously, but I find that inevitably I see my reminder list at some point.
I haven't tested this one.]