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Question: How Does the Event Calendar Work for You?

29

Yesterday I was posting a new event (a Blender demo in Baton Rouge) to the Event Calendar and I was wondering if people actually notice new events showing up there. So let me ask you: do you read the Event Calendar and do you notice when new stuff appears in it? Is it a useful part of the website? Any suggestions for improvement?

Personally, I love it because it shows what's going on with Blender in the real life and it gives people a chance to meet others out there. If this site is about anything it is not about scripts, releases or images but about putting the people who are out there in the spotlight, working with Blender, having fun with it and defining Blender's existence.

Oh well, please let me know what you think!

About the Author

Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.

29 Comments

  1. Nog vroeg in de ochtend dus ff in het nederlands:
    Die kalender is leuk en best handig, maar het valt te weinig op als er een nieuw event aan toegevoegd is. Een rood sterretje bij nieuwe events zou wel handig zijn, dat weer verdwijnt als je de pagina weer bezocht heb,maar ik weet niet of dat makkelijk te implementeren is.

  2. To be honest: I usually just notice the upcoming events that are at the top right of the main page. Perhaps it would be a good idea to show on the main page when the newest event was added. In that way it is easier to keep track of new events, because I simply don't visit the event calender every day to check if there have been updates to it.

  3. I'm with Joc. Coming directly from the blender-site I didn't notice it at all.

    I thought that it was just a different view of the newsitems that actually have a date to it. My suggestion would be to seperate the calender and the news a little bit more.

    Take for example that CAVE Event. Instead of adding this to the news AND to the calender you could have added it to the calender ONLY, add the newstext to the EVENT, and link directly (in)to the calender-event from the blender site.

    By doing it this way people would also browse through your calender.

    Just my 2cents

  4. I too usually read the headlines from the Blender.org site.
    I do take a look at the calendar when I'm reading articles and I think it could be made a little more prominent. I do read it, I would use it, if I had more time to develop projects.

    Thanks for this site. You are really accomplishing your stated goal, and I really appreaciate how frequently there is new Blender news.

    Regards,
    Mike

  5. for some reason, i never even look what is on the sidebars. they are usually very crowded looking, seem to contain some sort of archiev or calendar widget :) i just read the top article and thats all. I'm boring user.

    .b

  6. Yes, the event calendar is pretty useful. Yesterday I just went to a blender event in my area because it was posted in the calendar. That is a useful feature for me.

  7. Well, I certainly appreciate it! :) I am relatively new to "the Nation" so I've been scouring the site daily, including the calendar. I certainly think it's appropriate because I've (already) come to expect a lot of "avocacy" from BlenderNation, so please keep the events coming. For the sake of people who aren't noticing it, perhaps (depending on how content is managed) you might find (or develop) a small calendar widget. I think there is PHP code freely available for this. Perhaps if the surfer sees a month blocked out in a small sidebar area, he'll tie that to a calendar or events. Beyond that, it's sort of a "lead a fish to water, but can't turn it into a horse" ... or something like that...

  8. Hi Bart,

    I think the event calendar is a great idea, but being off to the side, it doesn't seem to attract much attention.

    Recently Slashdot added more articles to their homepage by adding smaller, unexpanded articles in between their main articles. Take a look at http://slashdot.org and scroll down a bit to see what I'm talking about. Maybe something similar could be done with calendar items to help readers keep up with new and current events without crowding out the full articles, for example:

    When a new calendar item is added, it is added to the main articles on the homepage, but without an accompanying photo or blurb. A "spiderworm's birthday" event would be shown only as: "New Event - spiderworm's birthday on September 13th, 2006". Again, this is just a link to the event article without a photo or description, just enough to let everyone know that a new calendar event has been added

    On the day a calendar item is fulfilled, for example my birthday, a link appears at the top of the articles saying: "Today - spiderworm's birthday," again without an image or descriptive text. Readers can click the link to read more information about the event if they so desire.

    spiderworm

  9. Me too, here.

    I don't see the calender, sorry. I think it's very useful as potential idea, but a data annoucement have to be anyway reported on the principal blog with an clear entry.

    My 0,02

    ;-)

  10. i have it feed into iCal, so i see it constantly. my only regret is that i cannot get to most of the events. ; P

    i think it is really useful. and thanks for all the constant effort!

    jim ww

    PS and yes, it could use more cowbell.

  11. I think it is very useful, and keep hoping an event will show up that I can actually attend. But so far no luck.

    My only suggestion would be to somehow make it a little more prominent. It's not very obvious.

  12. I realized it today, but before reading this. the calendar is a great idea and you can see the interessting events with one glance.

  13. well, I think the calendar needs to appear as a CALENDAR at the top of the page not just lines of text because it makes it Blend in too much. Also, a separate feed just for the calendar that is sent to your e-mail would be nice (I don't know if that is already a function or not) Cheers!

  14. Hi everyone,

    I read all your input with interest. I thought Spiderworm's suggestion was the nicest one as it is a modest extension, doesn't eat too much screen space but still draw the visitor's attention to events.

    Newly added future events will now appear at the top of the screen and current events will be drawn between the articles when appropriate.

    Please let me know if something goes wrong.

    Have fun,

    Bart

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