The new MIT Events Calendar uses the Localist "Software-as-a-Service" (SaaS) events calendar product. It is designed to provide a unified public events calendar for the MIT community and its followers. It also provides several mechanisms for integrating with department web sites, personal web pages, and custom applications. This page summarizes the various integration options and links to detailed information for each.
This is by far the easiest and least costly way to embed MIT Events Calendar events in your own web site. Localist has a widget builder that lets you filter the feed and construct the widget you want to embed. If the widget builder does not provide exactly the filtering you want, you can additional parameters manually to get exactly what you want. Once you have the widget code, you can use your own CSS to customize its appearance.
A limitation of the widget model is that users clicking on the events for detail will be taken to the MIT Events Calendar, and away from your web site. This is generally the desired behavior from an MIT perspective as it helps with cross-promoting events and encourages users to peruse the MIT Events Calendar. But it can be undesirable from the perspective of your web site or group if you are trying to create a strong standalone brand.
- For detailed instructions see MIT Events Calendar - Calendar Feeds and Embedding
If you have access to development resources and need deeper integration or are building your own calendar application, Localist provides a read-only API. This allows you to do the same filtering as the widget and feeds, but will hand the event data to your application to handle as you see fit. This means you can present it in your own application, and also show event details on your own event detail pages.
- For detailed information about the Localist read-only API see http://support.localist.com/article/localist-api/
Localist is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) calendar application. Like many such products, it does not have a traditional test server available to end-users, much like other SaaS calendar applications such as Google Calendar or Office 365. However, you can still do your integration testing without impacting your production events.
- Read-only feeds and APIs
The Localist feeds, widgets, and API are all read-only. You cannot change event data in the MIT Events Calendar. If your production events are sufficient for you to test your integration, you can safely do so against the production calendar.
- Hidden events
Sometimes you will want to create specific events for testing to account for all your test cases. For example, you may want events that follow a specific repeating pattern, overlap, or appear on dates and times for which you have no real events scheduled. When you create events in Localist, you can set their visibility to "Unlisted" or "Restricted/Widgets Only". This will hide them from public view in the MIT Events Calendar. They will still be accessible through the API and the feed.
- Tagged events
Regardless of what visibility you set, you may want to tag all your test events with a tag unique to your project, for example "New_IST_Site_Testing" or something similar. This will allow you to filter your feed or API call by tag to only retrieve test events. It will also allow you to easily find your test events to delete them after your integration has gone live. Remember to remove the test tag filter from your production integration.