Definitions of CalConnect Terms

This is a short list of definitions of terms used throughout this website, related to our structure, committees, events, and types of sessions.

Ad Hoc Committee

An impromptu and by intent short-lived committee formed to explore a possibilty or address an issue, where the duration or purpose does not seem to warrant a more formal approach.  Ad Hoc Committees may also be formed in non-technical areas.  

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors consists of up to seven elected Directors which may be but need not be representatives of CalConnect Members. The Board is responsible for the governance of The Calendaring and Scheduling Consortium, Inc. (that is, the corporation itself) in accordance with the Bylaws.


A BOF (Birds of a Feather) session is an informal discussion on any area of interest to the group or a substantial part of it. BOFs may be scheduled in advance of a Conference, or proposed by any participant during the course of a Conference, and held when time permits. BOFs are typically scheduled for no more than an hour to an hour-and-a-half. BOFs may also be scheduled during an Interoperability Test Event.

BOFs are generally interactive discussions on a problem, an issue, or a potential work area. A BOF may (but need not) begin with or be based on some form of presentation offered by the person requesting the BOF. A BOF is a good way to initiate discussion in an area and determine whether there is enough interest to try and form a Provisional Committee to explore the issue further. A BOF may result in the formation of an Provisional Committee or other follow-on activity such as a Workshop.

CalConnect Conference

CalConnect holds three CalConnect Conferences (sometimes just "Conferences") each year, usually in conjunction with an Interoperability Test Event and Developers Forum. The Conference is are open to all member representatives, an non-members may attend as Observers. In some cases a Conference may also involve a public Workshop which will also allow any non-member to participate upon registration.

CalConnect Conferences are where Provisional Committees report on their findings and where Technical Committees report on their work, hold discussions and resolve outstanding issues. Conferences also provide an opportunity to foster new work and ideas through BOFs and Workshops, and a general plenary session. See CalConnect Conferences for more information.

Interoperability Test Event

Interoperability Test Events are typically held three times a year. They normally last two or three days, and are held the same week as, and prior to a CalConnect Conference. These events are designed for members and non-members to conduct interoperability testing of Calendaring and Scheduling products and services - generall pre-release versions of products. There are two primary goals: to improve overall product interoperability and to provide a test bed for evaluating and improving new protocols being worked on by Technical Committees. For more information see CalConnect Interoperability Test Event.

The Interoperability Test Event is managed by an Interoperability Test Event Manager. This person is a CalConnect member representative, and is appointed yearly from member representatives who have volunteered for the position.


A Member of CalConnect is normally an organization (e.g. vendor, company, governmental organization, academic institution) except in the case of an Individual Member. Member Representatives are individuals from a member who represent their organization in CalConnect activities. Each member has a Primary Representative who is responsible for the member's involvement in CalConnect, and who votes on behalf of the member for activities such as the election to the Steering Committee.


An Observer is an individual from a non-member who is attending a CalConnect Conference to determine whether or not his or her organization should become a member. An organization may send one or more observers to a single CalConnect Conference. A mor, or a non-member, may also send one or more observers to an Interoperabilty Test Event to experience the event and determine its applicability and value (however, observers at a test event may not actually participate in the testing).

Provisional Committee

A Provisional Committee (or "PC") is established to explore a problem area, issue, or potential work area, often as a result of a BOF or Workshop. It is made up of representatives from interested members.

A PC is normally established at the end of a Conference and intended to report out at the next Conference with the goal of recommending appropriate action to CalConnect (e.g. create a Technical Committee, conduct a Workshop, etc.). The work of a PC may be extended when it has not been able to complete its assigned task.


Obsolete name for a CalConnect Conference.

Steering Committee (SC)

The Steering Committee was a standing committee made up largely of representatives of elected members (originally, representatives of all founding members). It was responsible for the technical direction of CalConnect through TC CHAIRS, and had other duties related to membership, policies, and planning. The Steering Committee was closed in 2014 as its functions had largely been replaced by other activities and restructuring it to assign more responsibilities proved impractical.

Technical Committee (TC)

Technical Committees are the technical working groups of CalConnect. A Technical Committee is established with a specific charter (scope of work), time frame, deliverables and expected schedule, and is intended to disband when its scope of work is completed.

Technical Committees work in between CalConnect events, and report on the status of their work at each CalConnect Conference. The format and content of TC sessions is up to the Technical Committees and may include presentations, a status update, open discussion on outstanding issues, and so forth.


TC CHAIRS is a standing committee made up of the Chairs of all Technical Committees and Provisional Committees. TC CHAIRS is chaired by the Chair of TC CHARS and is responsible to the Board of Directors for the day-to-day conduct of technical work in CalConnect.

TC CHAIRS meets weekly by conference call to coordinate the activities of all TCs and PCs and plan for CalConnect events and sessions. It distributes a weekly e-mail to the membership identifying the next TC/PC conference calls for each committee.


A workshop is a way for CalConnect members to present issues they feel are important in the world of Calendaring and Scheduling and related technologies, with a view to interesting other members in working on such problems. Unlike a BOF, workshops are planned in advance and typically last two hours or more (in some cases they have run for an entire day). They typically involve some form of introductory presentation, followed by open discussion on the problems, and work on ideas on how to solve those problems.

Workshops often lead to the creation of a Provisional Committee" to examine the issue and scope the charter and work of a potential Technical Committee to work in the area.

In some cases CalConnect holds "Public" Workshops, where additional publicity is given to the topic for the purpose of interesting non-members to participate and shape the discussion. This benefits CalConnect by broadening the discussion on a particular topic to include others who may have more detailed domain experience, and to help bring such experience into CalConnect itself. Such public workshops are open to non-members by invitation.