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Old 03-27-2011, 06:17 PM   #1
fartang
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Questions by new user

I am new to Calibre, no mobile device yet (probably an ipad in future)

1-Is it possible to put Calibre library in different subfolders, say books, papers, magazines, etc. so that one can view one category only? Would it make browsing faster?

2-How can I search for duplicates of the same book (maybe with slightly different title) and remove them?

Thanks
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Old 03-27-2011, 08:42 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fartang View Post
I am new to Calibre, no mobile device yet (probably an ipad in future)

1-Is it possible to put Calibre library in different subfolders, say books, papers, magazines, etc. so that one can view one category only? Would it make browsing faster?

2-How can I search for duplicates of the same book (maybe with slightly different title) and remove them?

Thanks
Did you read 'sticky 2' in this sub-forum?

Use your tags and IMHO, disable the download of those from the metadata sources , just too many.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:15 AM   #3
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IMHO, disable the download of those from the metadata sources , just too many.
IMHO, leave them enabled. In the absence of content searching of our ebooks, the more tags, the better when searching for content. It does make it harder to use the Tag Browser to find a specific tag, which is why I seldom use it. I just type in the name of the tag I want to find into the search bar. I add my own tags and often add a few saved searches for those tags. I really enjoy exploring the variety of tags that theducks considers to be "too many." There's often also a tag for the main character name, so I can search on characters.

I suppose our differing viewpoints is why we each used the "O" in "IMHO"
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Old 03-28-2011, 11:01 AM   #4
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I also feel the more tags, the better.

As far as using "different subfolders" goes, you can't make modifications with in the calibre library folder itself. However, you can create additional libraries. First, make a new folder alongside your existing library folder, giving it a unique name. In calibre, click on the icon at the top of the screen that looks like a bunch of books (and tells you how many books are in your library). Then, click on the button for "Create an empty library at new location." To access your new library, click on the little arrowhead to the right of the books icon, then click on the library listed at the bottom of the dropdown menu.

Be careful you don't get carried away adding libraries. There are valid reasons for having multiple libraries, such as two people sharing a computer but each having their own books. I have three libraries, one for books, one for comics, and one for sheet music, since each category requires different custom columns. The ones you suggested should be alright but the more you split up your books, etc. into different libraries, the more places you will have to search to find what you want. Keep in mind that calibre has excellent search capabilities that can be used to find your books, etc. and, if you choose, isolate them into individual lists, all within the same library.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:11 PM   #5
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I'm in the minimize tags camp and still have them turned off on download. Now that I can create a custom genre column and use this column to automatically create collections on my Sony maybe it's time to open the tag flood gates.

Even minimizing tags I have 787 tags for my 6250 books.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:36 PM   #6
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I'm a minimal tag guy too. I can understand where Starson17 is coming from, there certainly are some "interesting" tags out there.

Now if every single book was consistently tagged with those "interesting" tags (be it a character name, a location, or whatever takes your fancy) then maybe I would be tempted into doing as dwanthny says of using a separate genre column and cutting loose.

However the OCD in me just detests the inconsistencies which would mean I could never use it to search. For instance say I wanted all books that were tagged "NZ" to indicate a NZ location. There could well be some books in my library which will have that tag. But I can guarantee that the majority will not. So I will be better off googling and then seeing if I have the books it finds. The same applies to any tag you don't set yourself, due to the lack of data scrubbing and control.

Let alone all the "Sci-fi, SciFi, SyFy, Science Fiction..." variations which do my head in.

But that's just me - you love 'em or hate 'em...
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Old 03-29-2011, 07:50 AM   #7
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For instance say I wanted all books that were tagged "NZ" to indicate a NZ location. There could well be some books in my library which will have that tag. But I can guarantee that the majority will not.
If I want the majority to have the "NZ" tag. I simply add it - that same way you'd have to do to get that tag added.

Leaving the tags floodgates open doesn't prevent me from adding any tags I want. Turning it off doesn't add any tags that I can't add when it's open. I just hate losing data about my books. What does annoy me is when my own tags are mixed in with so many others, it's hard to browse them. I haven't really solved that problem. I've considered putting my tags in a custom column, and I've tried marking my tags with a prefix. Both would work, but I just haven't been consistently doing it. Fortunately, I can do it retroactively, as I do keep a list of my own tags.

Last edited by Starson17; 03-29-2011 at 09:17 AM.
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Old 03-29-2011, 08:09 AM   #8
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If I want the majority to have the "NZ" tag. I simply add it - that same way you'd have to do to get that tag added.
Of course, but I thought we were talking about the value of having metadata downloaded tags. I will only know to put "NZ" on a book if I have already read it or know enough about it.

Whereas the value of downloaded tags (to me) would be that it can tell me things about not only books I have read but more importantly books I haven't. However as tags are not consistently applied in the metadata sources that value is too questionable for my purposes. As I said above if a tag is meant to have some "meaning" such as a character name, then the value of that meaning is lessened when not every occurrence is tagged with it that should have it.

It is like having a "Read" tag or custom column, but only populating it for some of the books. You can't then use it to exclude all books that you have "read" from some action. Over time you will work through your library and make sure that it is set correctly, but until you have done that it has no useful value for making decisions or searching. Multiple that by thousands of tags and as I say the OCD in me just can't cope
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Old 03-29-2011, 08:10 AM   #9
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It wouldn't be hard (albeit time consuming as all get out) to go into the tag editor, find groups of similar tags, and rename them with a common name. It's a project I'll undertake one of these days but right now, I'm up to my ample asset scanning and inputting my books so I'll continue to take the easy way out and let calibre find tags for me (it generally finds tags I never wqould have found on my own). I also take a glance to be sure tags that would be important to me are there but I generally do not have to add any. Once I finish my current project from hell, I'll have time to edit the tags calibre fetches for me so I'll have more consistancy.
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Old 03-29-2011, 08:25 AM   #10
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@Jeannie - the problem I found with doing that is my library continually grows . So even if you reach a point of adding all your books, spend many, many hours cleaning up all your tags - then the next time you add a book and retrieve tags for it you have to go through a cleanup process yet again for that new book. I already spend far too much time fiddling with Calibre versus time I should be reading the books it contains!

I did consider a generic plugin which would allow you to setup mappings for your tags, so you could for instance make sure that the next time you download a book it would use your "cleaned up" view of the tag world to resolve that for you. e.g. You setup a mapping for any of "SciFi", "Sci Fi", "SyFy" etc to map to "Science Fiction". That way when you get tags for books in future you don't have to remember or look too closely yourself.

However as I only use the Goodreads metadata download plugin these days, and it has a cut-down version of that in place (which I will put add a configurable GUI for in Calibre 0.8) I frankly can't be bothered. But then I only use downloaded tags for a genre, whereas others like Starson see them as potentially more interesting which is cool.

I think unless your library is very small you either accept them for what they are, or don't use them - the middleground could lead to many hours on the keyboard
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:18 AM   #11
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@Jeannie - the problem I found with doing that is my library continually grows . So even if you reach a point of adding all your books, spend many, many hours cleaning up all your tags - then the next time you add a book and retrieve tags for it you have to go through a cleanup process yet again for that new book. I already spend far too much time fiddling with Calibre versus time I should be reading the books it contains!

I did consider a generic plugin which would allow you to setup mappings for your tags, so you could for instance make sure that the next time you download a book it would use your "cleaned up" view of the tag world to resolve that for you. e.g. You setup a mapping for any of "SciFi", "Sci Fi", "SyFy" etc to map to "Science Fiction". That way when you get tags for books in future you don't have to remember or look too closely yourself.

However as I only use the Goodreads metadata download plugin these days, and it has a cut-down version of that in place (which I will put add a configurable GUI for in Calibre 0.8) I frankly can't be bothered. But then I only use downloaded tags for a genre, whereas others like Starson see them as potentially more interesting which is cool.

I think unless your library is very small you either accept them for what they are, or don't use them - the middleground could lead to many hours on the keyboard
I agree that while a library is growing (I'm at 1300 but I'm expecting that total to run up to 2200 by the time I'm done), it would take too long to be continuously be cleaning up tags which is why I'm not bothering with it. However, once I get my present book collection scanned and into calibre, then clean up the tags (could do it in a few days if that was all I did all day but I would probably spread it out over a couple, three weeks to preserve what little sanity I have left), I won't be adding that many more new books (what's the point of getting very many new ones when I have enough to keep me busy for years, if not the rest of my life?) so editing the tags as I add each book won't be that big of a deal. The process shouldn't take more than five minutes per book, if that long. If I'm adding only 10 books per month (a high estimate, one to three will be more realistic), that's still less than an hour per month and that is spread out over the month. Even with my ADD, I still have enough self discipline to do the needed editing with each book so that a mass re-edit will not ever be necessary once the entire library has been cleaned up.
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:42 AM   #12
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Of course, but I thought we were talking about the value of having metadata downloaded tags. I will only know to put "NZ" on a book if I have already read it or know enough about it.
Correct. If one book has an NZ tag, there's no guarantee that any other book has it. It's likely that there should be other books that have that tag, and I can't expect them to be tagged that way. Of course, that's just as true for tags I use - I don't always use them as consistently as I should. For me, it's the question of whether I'd rather have some books marked NZ, even if all are not so marked, or have none marked with that tag.

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Whereas the value of downloaded tags (to me) would be that it can tell me things about not only books I have read but more importantly books I haven't.
Exactly. If a book is tagged NZ, I've got some additional information of what it's about. Sure, I'd like all books to be tagged consistently with the NZ tag, but just because they all aren't tagged is no reason for me to throw away that data about the one that is tagged.

Quote:
It is like having a "Read" tag or custom column, but only populating it for some of the books. You can't then use it to exclude all books that you have "read" from some action. Over time you will work through your library and make sure that it is set correctly, but until you have done that it has no useful value for making decisions or searching. Multiple that by thousands of tags and as I say the OCD in me just can't cope
I understand. I'll never get the tags all consistently applied. When I think of them as tags, I feel the same OCD compulsion you do. To deal with that, I have to think of them as comments on the book, not tags, and I recognize that they reflect the person making those comments as much as the book itself.
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:53 AM   #13
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It wouldn't be hard (albeit time consuming as all get out) to go into the tag editor, find groups of similar tags, and rename them with a common name.
Whenever I did this, I found myself throwing away data. Should I combine English Fiction with Modern English Fiction? Do I really want to study the first book to see if it's "Modern" just to add the tag from the second?

I really think the best solution is to keep all the tags, and then add your own. That's what I'm doing now. If you want to make them easy to search, put your consistently applied tags into a separate column.
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Old 03-29-2011, 10:28 AM   #14
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Whenever I did this, I found myself throwing away data. Should I combine English Fiction with Modern English Fiction? Do I really want to study the first book to see if it's "Modern" just to add the tag from the second?

I really think the best solution is to keep all the tags, and then add your own. That's what I'm doing now. If you want to make them easy to search, put your consistently applied tags into a separate column.
I was thinking of editing more in the way of kiwidude's example regarding the variation in spelling of Sci-Fi. Your example is one where it would be beneficial to keep both.

Some culling is good, however. For excrement and merriment, I took a quick look at the tags related to Fantasy; I have 20 different variations, most with less than two or three books in them. That could be pared down quite a bit. Ethnic varieties of Fantasy eats up quite a few entries. English and American fantasy are large categories but many others have only one or two entires each. Those could be combined into a single category called Other Ethnic Fantasy. Of course, the main category, Fantasy, would be kept.

Under Romance, I have "Romance - Suspense," "Romantic suspense fiction," and "Romantic suspense novels." The latter three could be combined into one category.
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Old 03-29-2011, 10:32 AM   #15
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Redundent tags

Besides the Variants that Kiwidude pointed out.

I hate 'shotgun' tagging

All Science fiction is NOT Fantasy or Fantasy and Science fiction.

Science Fiction is: Du-oh!, Fiction
so why do I need a Fiction tag on that book.

I will give tagging story locale a break, but Author locale? at the book level?
(Does Lisanne Norman moving to the USA stop her from being a English Author? USA authors moving to Ireland, stop being American Authors?)

As it is, I have 112 'Tags' and 61 'User tags' (coding notes, comments that don't make it into the book on export) for 2500 entries (some are place holders for DT books)

Enough ranting by me

Tags fall into the same area as Firstname Lastname or Lastname, Firstname
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