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The goal of the pcal project is to implement a simple calendaring and
meeting scheduling system using peer-to-peer (P2P) concepts.
There are many calendaring applications out there, but each requires
users to commit to a specific environment. Some are unnecessarily bound
to other products.
- MS-Outlook requires an organization to host its email service using
- MS-Outlook tightly binds calendaring/scheduling with email
- Apple's iCal works only on Apple OS X
- KDE's calendar requires Linux/KDE
The architectural goals include:
- Server-less P2P implementation enables people to use the application
without requiring the organization's IT department to provide a server,
configure users, do installs on desktops, etc.
- Work identically across all common computers/operating systems without
requiring a software port.
- Implement a system that can communicate with other tools, like email,
without being bound to a particular MUA/MTA.
- Use internet standard XML for inter-application communication.
- Enable mobile users to disconnect/reconnect or people to shut down
- Provide a user interface that will adapt to desktop and PDA screen
- Notify users of events using multiple technologies (e.g. email, pager).
- Enable events to contain markup text (e.g. HTML) and multiple attachments
of various types (e.g. documents, audio).
- Security (encryption, but not necessarily authentication)
- Simple deployment model.
- Enable other applications to discover and talk to this one with a
Other high-level assumptions and ground rules:
- Effective application documentation using industry-standard templates
to support future maintenance and expansion
- Java implementation, but server-less constraint means no J2EE and no
- Java Web Start deployment model (challenge: requires a web server!)