How to Use Event Chips in Google Sheets

Event Chips are a part of Google’s Smart Canvas initiative. These chips connect Google Sheets to the details of events in Google Calendar. Imagine seeing who you are meeting with, where, and for how long. All inside of Google Sheets.

Inserting Event Chips into Google Sheets

Before you insert an Event Chip, you must have events in Google Calendar. You can select your events using the contents of the event Summary field, as shown in the image below.

The event summary pointed out amongst the event details
The Event Summary in Google Calendar

Once you have your calendar events created, you are ready to create a chip. There are two methods for inserting Event Chips into Google Sheets:

  • Option 1: Using the Insert menu: Click on the Insert menu and select Smart chips > Calendar events. Choose the event from the pop-up menu.
Inserting an Event Chip using the menus
Inserting an Event Chip with the Menu
  • Option 2: Using the “@” key: Type the “@” key and then start typing the event’s name. A list of suggested events will appear. Select the event you want to insert.
Inserting an Event Chip using the @ symbol
Inserting an Event Chip with the @ Sign

Appearance of Chips in your Spreadsheet

An event chip has a pill-shaped grey highlighting containing the event’s Summary.

An event chip before hovering over it
Event Chip

When you hover your mouse over an event chip, a small panel appears with more information about the event, such as the event Summary, Start date (and time), and End date (and time.)

The card that appears when you hover over a Chip
Event Chip Card

The information in a hovercard is helpful, but the data extractions are more powerful.

Data Extraction

Event Chips are a conduit for more information from Google Calendar. You can use these data extraction techniques to unlock these additional criteria such as the event URL, organizer, attendees, and location. See this post from Google explaining which extractions are limited to Workspace accounts.

Example

Let’s say you plan your next two work days in Google Calendar. Perhaps you want to see where and how far you will be driving.

First, let’s extract the Location field from each of these three events.

Extracting Multiple Locations

After extracting the locations, rearrange the data with start addresses in one column and end addresses in another. Add your home or office address as the beginning and end.

Addresses Arranged in Two Columns

Then, you can use TripTally to find the time and distance for each drive.

Conclusion

As you can see, you can use Google’s Smart Canvas features to unlock a higher level of productivity in Google Sheets and extend the functionality of Google Calendar by making event data more accessible.

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