I finally decided that I wanted my calendar to show on my desktop. So, I used conky, and a program called gcalcli to do it.

First, install conky:
"sudo apt-get install conky"
"su -c 'yum install conky'"
Next, install gcalcli:
"sudo apt-get install gcalcli"
"su -c 'yum install gcalcli'"

Various Configuration Files

Create a file named .conkyrc in your home directory. I use the following config:

# conky configuration
# edited by kaivalagi
#edited some by Jak_o_Shadows

# set to yes if you want Conky to be forked in the background
background no

# Use Xft?
use_xft yes

# Xft font when Xft is enabled
xftfont Bitstream Vera Sans Mono:size=9

# Text alpha when using Xft
xftalpha 0.8

# Update interval in seconds
update_interval 5.0

# This is the number of times Conky will update before quitting.
# Set to zero to run forever.
total_run_times 0

# Use double buffering (reduces flicker, may not work for everyone)
double_buffer yes

# Minimum size of text area
minimum_size 350 5
#maximum_width 350

# Draw shades?
draw_shades yes

# Draw outlines?
draw_outline no

# Draw borders around text
draw_borders no
draw_graph_borders yes

# Stippled borders?
stippled_borders 0

# border margins
#border_margin 0

# border width
border_width 0

# Default colors and also border colors
default_color white
default_shade_color black
default_outline_color white

# own window options
own_window		yes
own_window_transparent	yes
own_window_type		desktop
own_window_hints	undecorated,below,sticky,skip_taskbar,skip_pager

# Text alignment, other possible values are commented
#alignment top_left
#alignment top_right
#alignment bottom_left
alignment top_left

# Gap between borders of screen and text
# same thing as passing -x at command line
gap_x 10
gap_y 25

# Subtract file system buffers from used memory?
no_buffers yes

# set to yes if you want all text to be in uppercase
uppercase no

# number of cpu samples to average
# set to 1 to disable averaging
cpu_avg_samples 2

# number of net samples to average
# set to 1 to disable averaging
net_avg_samples 2

# Force UTF8? note that UTF8 support required XFT
override_utf8_locale no

# Add spaces to keep things from moving about?  This only affects certain objects.
use_spacer right

text_buffer_size 2048

# colours
color1 white
# light blue
color2 6892C6
# orange
color3 E77320
# green
color4 78BF39
# red
color5 CC0000

# variable is given either in format $variable or in ${variable}. Latter
# allows characters right after the variable and must be used in network
# stuff because of an argument

# stuff after 'TEXT' will be formatted on screen


${color1}${font Bitstream Vera Sans Mono:size=21}
${execpi 600 gcalcli --24hr calw 2 | python ~/conky/translate.py}

Create a file named .gclalclirc in your home directory. Fill in the details:

user: user.name@gmail.com
pw: password
cals: owner

For Cinnamon/ATI users

Unfortunatley, the --nc option for gcalcli appears not to be working. This results in messed up formatting in conky. The solution is to strip this out using a small python script, with a regex. I put this script in ~/conky/translate.py

#!/usr/bin/env python
# -*- coding: utf-8 -*-

import sys
import re

def main():

	detector = re.compile('\[\d+(?:;\d+)?m')
	for line in sys.stdin.xreadlines():

if __name__ == '__main__':

Autostart conky however you want! I use Cinnamon's auto-start, but likely cron or similar would work.