This paper takes a look at the use of personal calendar by interviewing and observing people’s behavior in using them over a long period of time. Among the 8 participants, they find that paper calendar is preferred over electronic one. In detail, paper calendars serves as temporal maps, emotional awareness artifacts, personal information management tools, handheld tools, diaries, etc., all constructed by, related to, and comprehended by individual users. The authors conclude that paper calendars are still more popular, possibly due to the fact that paper allows “individual dedication of space to suit the users’ needs”.
What are the roles of personal calendars?
- As temporal maps: personal calendars represent temporal maps that are constructed by users. Spots on these maps have different characters and meanings to the users, coded both by visual appearance and invisible relations between them and the users.
- As emotional awareness artifacts: studies about family calendars have already acknowledged the importance of the calendar as an awareness artifact.
- As personal information management tools
- As handheld tools
- As Diaries
I would take away their findings as the ‘personal aspect’ of any calendar systems. This aspect originates from individual users’ subjectivity toward calendar events, such as the importance of such events perceived by users, the need to keep track of one’s schedule, the need to recall certain events, preserving privacy, etc.
Another thought is about seeing the calendar as personal vs. functional (or vs. more). There are certain differences when taking into account the users.