View Full Version : Question about recent change when adding potential duplicates

03-31-2012, 03:46 AM
I tried searching on this first, so I apologize if I've missed this already being covered.

I noticed that "recently" (meaning, it didn't always do it, but I don't exactly remember when it changed), when I add new books to calibre, it not only offers the book title, but it includes the author name.

However, I find that I don't always really have duplicates by author. So it seems to only be matching on book title.

That might be how it's designed to work - and I've used calibre long enough that I know to allow them all to import and to doublecheck the potential duplicates manually - but I think it could be misleading to a new user. It looks like it's actually matching on both title and author, which could lead to someone thinking they've already imported a book, when they really didn't.

It's not a huge thing unless the user is the type to delete the original after they think they've imported it into calibre.

So my question is: is it intended to work that way (only match on title, even though it lists both title and author?

If so, I'd like to suggest it might be misleading. I suspect it was requested to have the author added, so there might be a good reason for it, but if I had a choice, I'd prefer it not to offer the author name (or to remind me, with the duplicate warning, that it's only testing on title, I suppose).

03-31-2012, 03:55 AM
The message in the dialog say "Books with the same title as the following already exist in the database, add them anyway?"

I don't see how it can be made clearer that the matching is on titles only.

03-31-2012, 09:25 AM
You cannot make the message itself much clearer, but I agree with FizzyWater that the fact that now authors are shown can be a bit misleading.

The problem is perhaps caused by the fact that only one author is shown. Is that the author of the duplicate title found in the database? Is it the author of the book you are adding? It would be a great improvement if you could show both, i.e. when a duplicate title is found, show something like this:

Existing: <title> by <author_1>; adding <title> by <author_2>

I know that the Find Duplicates plugin does something like that, but not while adding books. It would be great to have such a feature while adding books.

03-31-2012, 09:32 AM
It is the author of the book you are adding, as implied by the message in the box. And see for the profusion of things that people want to happen during the poor add books process.

03-31-2012, 09:40 AM
@Kovid - good grief, I just took a look at that, a sneak peek behind the scenes of what you have to juggle with calibre requests. Respect... :)

03-31-2012, 10:56 AM
@Kovid - good grief, I just took a look at that, a sneak peek behind the scenes of what you have to juggle with calibre requests. Respect... :)

It's all about keeping the balls in the air ;) Seriously though, I do agree that the duplicates dialog can be made more useful, it is on my TODO list. I dont know how many of those requests will end up getting into the new dialog, but some certainly will.

03-31-2012, 11:29 AM
Yeah I've been known to grumble about that particular duplicate check, as I fall into the "title only match seems wrong" camp. However looking at the list of comments on that bug track it is obvious the can of worms it can be if you try to make it into some sort of user controllable merge operation. It's something I used to bump heads with but just changing the way I add books to calibre has avoided it for the most part.

03-31-2012, 11:36 AM
I'm in the "just get it in there and use a different tool to manage duplicates" camp, myself. ;)

03-31-2012, 11:39 AM
Haha - yeah, the problem is when you have a book with the same title by a different author, which means "just get it in there" isn't as easy as it sounds :)

03-31-2012, 06:43 PM
Thanks for your replies, Kovid. I did not realize people have been throwing all these balls at you :)

Good to see that the duplicates dialog is on your todo list.

03-31-2012, 09:31 PM
All the confusion with adding has made me to add books few at a time - easier to control and keep track. Once I found to my horror that new mobi had overwritten old one (strong no-no for me, I want to compare them first. In such cases I prefer to add duplicate book). Also I add additional formats in book edit panel - so I can be sure they go to the right place.

Would be nice of course just to drag everything into library and then sort them with adding dialog box.
Some situations I've had:
1. Already have the format, but from another source - Make duplicate book entry
2. I have tweaked the format and like it - Don't add
3. Have different format, from another source - Merge and move book to the top (for easy finding, now I have to search it out to enter source info)
4. Already have duplicates of different formats - Ask where to merge, give option to abort (I won't be sure which one I want before rechecking :))

Most of all I miss abort button - so that I can drag 20 books to the library and if any surprises occur, not add those 5 books this time.

Would surely be wonderful to have 'Add books' dialog with many options, but I'm afraid there's already enough balls in the air as is.

04-01-2012, 01:53 AM
So who would you handle the same author, but the author's name is formatted differently (LN, FN; different spacing or punctuation for initials; suffixes)?

I like match the title, and then show me the ones that match.

04-01-2012, 05:22 AM
At present I make duplicate books and then after closer look either merge or not (or delete the fresh addition).

04-01-2012, 12:16 PM
The human eye is the only real judge of quality. I inspect all of my books and mark them as to (my opinion) of quality.
Then I go back and fix them when I am really really bored:)

I have add duplicates turned off so I won't accidentally overwrite a fixed copy with an unfixed copy. If I think a different copy is better then I will manually delete the format and add the book. Mostly as long as they are readable I don't, but I have some Project Gutenberg that I may
replace with MR versions some day.

A bit of a pain, but bigger does not always mean better so I do it the best way I can.