Google Calendar (GCal) is pathetic, but are there better solutions?

In an effort to migrate my life to hosted organizational tools, I switched to Google Calendar a few weeks ago, hoping that managing my email and calendar in the same place would prove effective.  After a few weeks of using it and several hours trying to export my data and stop using it, it would be difficult to accurately convey my disappointment with the application.  GCal sucks.  Not only does it not work elegantly with GMail, but it doesn't sync with PDAs.  The sharing functionality  - the reason hosted apps are helpful in the first place - is only so-so, and after several frustrating hours trying to figure out how to export my data to a better solution, I'm giving up because Google's instructions and forums on the topic are pitiful.  I'm hoping to give 30boxes a try, but my expectations are tempered, and I suspect I may have to return to Outlook.  Despite all the attention paid to hosted apps over the past 10 years, from my perspective, it seems they've progressed only minimally.  Is it so difficult to design a solution to manage email, calendar and contacts seemlessly in a hosted environment?  If anyone has suggestions on apps I should try, please leave a comment.

By Josh Guttman

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