Using central.aegee.org

General Information

This site offers data about events in standard machine-readable format (iCalendar). All software, working with this format, can be configured to periodically fetch the information about the events and to show it current, without bothering the users to visit a website. The different programs understand the iCalendar format to a different extent, and show what they have understood.

Offering the information in machine-readable format allows re-publishing it automatically on portals, without having to retype the information for each event. See What is CalDAV and Synchronizing with vdirsyncer.

The site may store IP addresses to prevent misuse.

Email Notifications

When new events or tasks are uploaded, an email notification is usually sent to the subscribers of the mailing list TEST-CENTRAL-L@lists.aegee.org. No notifications are sent, when just the content of an uploaded event is changed. The mailing list TEST-CENTRAL-L@lists.aegee.org can be subscribed from https://lists.aegee.org/join/test-central-l.

Navigation with Keyboard

The TAB-key selects the elements on the web page. ENTER opens the active element. J jumps in the past. K goes in the future. L returns to today.

Integration with Android

If you do the integration with Google Calendar, as described below, it is not necessary to install additional programs, but then all distinct calendars will be shown as a single one and the tasks (deadlines) will not be displayed.

With the open-source application DAVx⁵, which can be downloaded over Google Play Store or from F-Droid, Android synchronizes its calendars with central.aegee.org. Other suitable applications exist, too.

In DAVx⁵ version 3.3.4 or newer create a new account by selecting the “orange +”. Under “Add account” select “Advanced login (special use cases)” and then enter: (base URL) central.aegee.org, without password, without certificate. In older version of DAVx⁵ select the “orange +” and then create an account with email address for user anonymous@central.aegee.org with any password.

Go to → Login → as Contact group method select “Groups are per-contact categories”. → Create account.

When new calendars are created on the server, DAVx⁵ must be told explicitly to refresh the list of calendars. The events are shown in the calendar applications on Android, after these applications are explicitly told which calendars to show. The calendars on Android do now show attachments (images) or internet addresses to events.

To-Do, as e.g. deadlines for applications, are presented as VTODO objects in CalDAV. When Tasks.org (F-Droid, Google Play), jtx Board (F-Droid, Google Play) or OpenTasks (Google Play, F-Droid) is installed, DAVx⁵ can synchronize the deadlines as tasks. To configure Tasks.org to download the tasks without DAVx⁵, go to ⚙ Settings → + Add an account → (Select a Platform) CalDAV → as user enter anonymous@central.aegee.org, random password, URL: https://central.aegee.org . Click on the diskette.

Integration with Apple

The integration works with all Apple devices. Under OS X open the Calendar application and then Preferences → Accounts. Under iOS select “Settings” → “Accounts”.

From there chose “Other“ → “CalDAV”. Enter as user anonymous@central.aegee.org with any password and as server central.aegee.org .

Select Calendars and Reminders to synchronize events and tasks.

Integration with Gnome Evolution

Evolution is software for working with calendars and emails under Linux. Select “File”→ New → “Collection Account” → “Advanced Options”. As server type central.aegee.org, do not enter user name. “Look up” → Next → Next → Finish. Check the menu “View“ → Window → Calendar (Ctrl+3).

Integration with Google Calendar

Go to calendar.google.com. From the upper left corner select the hamburger sign ☰, then “Other Calendars” → +→ “From URL address”. As URL address enter either https://central.aegee.org/a.ics (events from the past and in the future) or https://central.aegee.org/f.ics (only events in the future).

Google Calendar does not show the pictures and the URLs of the events.

After the connected Android devices realize that there is a new source of data, they can be manually set to show the additional calendar.

Integration with Live/Hotmail/Outlook.com Calendar

Go to calendar.live.com and select from the left “+ Add calendar” → “Subscribe from web”. As address enter either https://central.aegee.org/a.ics (events from the past and the future) or https://central.aegee.org/f.ics (only events in the future).

Integration with Microsoft Outlook

Install the Add-On CalDAVSynchronizer. Add a new profile. As username enter anonymous@central.aegee.org with any password, as synchronization direction select Server → Outlook, with WebDAV synchronization, only calendars.

Integration with Mozilla Thunderbird

Thunderbird is a program for calendars and emails, running under Windows, Linux and Mac OS. You need version 78.10 or higher.

For version 91 select the “Calendar” tab from the upper left corner (Ctrl+Shift+C). On the left side, click on the + after “Calendar”. → “On the Network” → Next. Leave “Username” empty, provide central.aegee.org as Location, leave “This location does not require credentials” unckecked, and “Offline support” checked. → Subscribe. When calendars are added or removed from the server, this procedure must be repeated.

The remaining text is for version 78.10+. From the menu “Tools” → “Add-ons” install the add-ons TbSync and DAV-4-TbSync/Provider for CalDAV and CardDAV. These enhance Thunderbird to be able to discover calendars, after entering only username or servername.

Afterwards click in the bottom right corner on “TbSync” or choose from the menu “Tools” → “Add-on Options”→TbSync. From the “TbSync account manager” window select at the bottom “Account actions” → “Add new account” → “CalDAV & CardDAV” → “Manual Configuration“. As CalDAV server address enter https://central.aegee.org/dav/calendars/ , provide name for the account. skip username and CalDAV server. “Next” → “Finish”. Select “Enable and synchronize this account”. Mark the calendars and then “Synchronize now”. Close the window. After selecting in the menu “Events and Tasks” → “Calendar” (Ctrl+Shift+C) you will see the events.

From time to time go back in the window “ТВSync account manager” and select over the account “Synchronize account”, in order to get the newest list of the calendars from the server.

Integration with Telegram

The events and tasks are mirrored in the Telegram channel central_aegee_org and central_aegee.

Integration with vdirsyncer

vdirsyncer can synchronize over CalDAV the data with the server on a Linux computer. To use it create a file called config containing
[general]
status_path = "status"

[storage local]
type = "filesystem"
path = "events"
fileext = ".ics"

[pair p]
a = "remote"
b = "local"
collections = ["from a"]
metadata = ["color", "displayname"]
conflict_resolution = "a wins"

[storage remote]
type = "caldav"
url = "https://central.aegee.org/dav/calendars/user/central/"
read_only = true
and execute vdirsyncer -c config discover --no-list && vdirsyncer -c config metasync --max-workers=1 && vdirsyncer -c config sync --force-delete --max-workers=1

This program does not show the content of the files. It is suitable for organizations, which want to download and republish automatically the events.

Integration with Windows

In order to show the CalDAV data in the integrated Windows Calendar, some work arounds are necessary. Open “Settings” → “Accounts” → “Email and app accounts” → “+ Add new account” → “iCloud”. As email address type anonymous@central.aegee.org with arbitrary password → “Done”. After it is “done”, tap the newly created iCloud account → “Edit” → “Edit synchronization for account” → “Manage”. If Windows has changed the username, type again anonymous@central.aegee.org. “Change mailbox sync settings”. Turn off Email and Contacts, leave Calendars on. Select “Advanced mailbox setting (settings for Contacts and Calendars (CalDAV) server”. As Calendar server provide https://central.aegee.org/. “Done” → “Save”. After a while in the programme “Calendar” you will see the different calendars and events.

Integration with Yahoo Calendar

Go to calendar.yahoo.com and select “Actions ⌄” → “Follow other calendars”. As iCal address enter either https://central.aegee.org/a.ics (events from the past and for the future) or https://central.aegee.org/f.ics (only events from the future).

The Yahoo calendar does not show pictures to the events.

What is CalDAV

In order to save information about events in a machine readable way a format is created called iCalendar. In this format for each event can be stored: summary, description, begin, end, internet site, repetition formula (e.g. every other Wednesday), location, categories, (cancelled) status, colour, attach a file (picture). The iCalendar format does not foresee to enter information simultaneously in many languages or to use HTML.

To distribute the data in iCalendar format the protocol CalDAV can be used. It allows creating separate calendars, and each calendar contains events. Properties of each calendar are: name, description, color, URL address, what kinds of objects does it store. The objects can be “Events”, “Notes” and “Tasks”. The website for unauthenticated users central.aegee.org shows only the events. Both calendars and events can have their own color. The programs displaying the events can show the color of the event instead of the color of the calendar.

The software understanding CalDAV periodically polls from the servers only the information which was changed since the last synchronization. Some software automatically refreshes the list of calendars from the server, other has to be told explicitly to do so.

What is WebCAL

A simpler way to distribute the events is to create one big file, containing all the events. This site offers two such files: https://central.aegee.org/f.ics (containing events from the future) and https://central.aegee.org/a.ics with the events from the past and from the future.

By clicking on webcal://central.aegee.org/f.ics or webcal://central.aegee.org/a.ics some programs offer to directly subscribe to the events and refresh automatically the information in the future.

Advantage of WebCAL compared to CalDAV is that subscribing to updates can be achieved using one click and the integration works with more programs. The disadvantage is, that for each change the whole big file must be transferred again, rather than getting just the changes since the last synchronization.