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Old 11-25-2012, 03:56 PM   #1
Airman
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Missing option in Calibre catalog module

First: Hello to who reads this (I am new here)

I have extensively experimented with Calibre (what a nice example of a database GUI). There is however an additional item which I would like to see added to the 'catalog' option. Why? Under 'create a cataloge' the option: 'included sections' lists 6 possible choices: one of those is 'genre'. As it works out, 'genre' is not really a genre but represents the 'tag' column. Unfortunately when you download ebook (collections) you find out that these tags are a hotchpotch of (too) many different references, including booksellers names, series names, strange abbreviations, alfabetic characters etc etc. Only a small part of these tags are genuine 'genres' such as autobiography, thriller, etc. For a catalogue listing these tags are unusable, it creates a huge (!) silly list. Obviously the tags can all be deleted ot adapted but that is a lot of work and also rather futile as you will download new tags all the time.
Consequently I have created a personal column named 'genre', actually exactly following a Calibre example in the FAQ! Here I have listed my own (real) genres...

Would it be possible to add at least one custom column to the choices in the catalogue. Certainly this would also benefit users for other reasons than a proper 'genre' sorting.

Hope someone picks up on this. If I missed something here, please correct me.
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:37 PM   #2
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A much better approach is to simply clean up your noisy tags. There is a section in the Creating Catalogs sticky discussing the importance of having clean, meaningful tags if you want to use the Genres section. I personally don't use tags that others have applied to books, as I find them virtually useless, and at best, inconsistently applied depending upon the source of the book. Better to do the cleanup on your entire library once, then integrate applying meaningful tags as a regular part of your workflow when adding new books.

If there's a compelling use case to having a section organized by a custom column, I'd consider adding that feature.

G
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Old 11-26-2012, 04:39 AM   #3
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GRiker, thanks for responding so quickly. Appreciate it.
Obviously you do agree with me on the uselessness and inconsistency of downloaded tags...
Of course it is no big deal to replace the tags field with info from another field (such as my homemade genre column) and then use tags for genre listings. But I am under the impression that tags and genre-labels are both usefull albeit for different purposes. A 'tag' can be used to locate a book on a very specific item. Example: searching on the tag 'India' would (hopefully) provide a listing of all books which have anything to do with India: books from many different genres ranging from military history to love stories to cooking books. As the number of tags for this purpose is almost limitless, to include all tags like 'India' as 'genre' would yield a big and unwieldy catalogue list (which is in fact the problem I am now having). The solution to use/adapt the tags field to reflect only real 'genre' information would solve that problem but negate the option to use tags to find quickly all books with a common denominator.
In the end every user can/will make a choice here, but it would be so nice if that would not be necessary...
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Old 11-26-2012, 06:20 AM   #4
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I must admit that being able to use a custom field such as #genre would also suit me. I have been tidying up tags when I add books, but such an option would mean that I could keep all downloaded tags and still have my genre categorisation.

If you add this to Calibre it might spur me on to adding similar support to Calibre2opds
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Old 11-26-2012, 07:58 PM   #5
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So far I've solved this by using a special prefix for my genres-tags, so that I can use a regex and exclude all the others when generating a catalog for my kindle. But I would definitely appreciate the option of using a custom column.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:31 AM   #6
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I've submitted a patch for inclusion in the next release. It enables using a custom column as the source for Genres, in addition to the default 'Tags' source. Eligible custom column types are:
  • Comma separated text, like tags, shown in the tag browser
  • Text, but with a fixed set of permitted values
  • Text, column shown in the tag browser

I've done moderate testing with each of these custom column types.

The 'Catalog options' section of the catalog sticky has a preview of the updated UI.

G

Last edited by GRiker; 11-28-2012 at 11:11 AM. Reason: Added link to UI preview
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Old 11-28-2012, 11:44 AM   #7
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Great! Thank you
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:46 AM   #8
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Many thanks and congratulations on your development speed.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GRiker View Post
I've submitted a patch for inclusion in the next release. It enables using a custom column as the source for Genres, in addition to the default 'Tags' source. Eligible custom column types are:
  • Comma separated text, like tags, shown in the tag browser
  • Text, but with a fixed set of permitted values
  • Text, column shown in the tag browser

I've done moderate testing with each of these custom column types.

The 'Catalog options' section of the catalog sticky has a preview of the updated UI.

G
This looks great. I'm glad that we can choose different columns as the source for Genres. Unfortunately, it doesn't do much for me because I want to use multiple custom columns for my Genres in the catalog. So I am still forced to compile those columns (from 2 - 3) into one column.

- Jade Aislin
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