Translate Outlook, Google and Zimbra meeting invites for iCal

August 10, 2007 in Software (E)


John Maisey today released version 1.1 of YAI (you are invited). YAI is a plug-in for Apple Mail that translates and transfers Outlook, Google Calendar, Zimbra and Exchange style meeting invitations to iCal. It corrects many incompatibilities between Microsoft Exchange style meeting invites and what iCal can understand.

With YAI installed, Exchange style invites received in Mail's inbox are processed as they arrive and are sent to iCal, ready to be acted on. Most invites will appear in iCal's notification pane, but any invites the user sends themselves will be added as an editable event. If there are invites from before YAI was installed, these are easily transferred to iCal by selecting them in Mail and pressing Cmd-Opt-L. They will be processed in exactly the same way as newly received ones.

The incompatibilities YAI fixes include problems with Exchange style invites from different time zones, invites that generate warnings about the recipient not being on your 'me' card and differences in the way event updates are handled that result in error messages in iCal.

There are several files and changes installed by YAI. YAI consists a rule in Mail, an applescript and an application. It also saves copies of the relevant invite data (.ics) files inside the user's Library folder. There are therefore several files and changes installed by YAI. YAI is, however, easy to install (and un-install). Just open the application and click the relevant button.

YAI is of benefit to those using an Apple Mac in an Exchange environment and also those that are likely to be sent un-requested (and unexpected) meeting invites from associates or colleagues.

YAI is is shareware. It will operate in the background for 14 days without being registered, after this time it will still work for another 14 days but you will be notified that it is unregistered every time you receive an invite.

You can purchase registration codes (£2 GBP per machine) via PayPal, from the installer window or by visiting the product's web page (

John Maisey is an independent software developer based in London, UK. He has been programming for over 18 years and has been using Apple Macs to do so since 2000.


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