MyCal: custom calendars for your iPhone
Here's the question: what day of the month does next Friday land on? You pull out your iPhone, turn it on, unlock it, navigate to the Calendar and switch to Month view. Got it. March 20th. Of course, being the self-proclaimed efficiency expert that you are (isn't everybody?), you quickly decide that was way too many steps for such a simple task. If you regularly need this particular type of information, you're going to have to find an easier way. You could (A) carry around a printout of the calendar for the month, or (B) check out MyCal.
MyCal is a single-purpose app from Chillix, the same developers to whom our faithful readers offered their offbeat to-do lists a while back. It allows you to pick a background -- from a wide variety of built-in images or from your own collection -- select a calendar style and set transparency levels. When you're done, it outputs a wallpaper image you can use to get a quick view of the month without even unlocking your phone. To be clear, it won't show you any appointments or tasks, just a good-looking calendar that's readily accessible. A recent update to the application fixed some issues with blurriness, and I give it two thumbs up for simplicity and usefulness. If you fit into the description in the first paragraph, you might just want to check it out. The user's guide offers a comprehensive preview, and it's available in the App Store for 99 cents (US). Chillix has built up a fairly extensive collection of iPhone apps; check out their website for some other gems.
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