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Old 03-18-2008, 11:27 AM   #1
pilotbob
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Keeping track of eBooks with Groqit or LibraryThing

Hi All...

I was wondering what you all use to keep track of all the books, treeBooks and eBooks that you read.

I was looking at the Groqit.com device. It looks interesting.

I am also a member of LibraryThing.com I just haven't had time to enter all my books by hand. I have a cuecat scanner but it has a ps2 keyboard connection, not USB so it doesn't work in any of our current computers.

Here is why I was looking at the Groqit device. I read all of the Star Trek series, there used to be several active ones, they seem to have slowed down alot. Anyway... every now and then, when my wife was at Walmart or somewhere she would see some of the new releases on the rack. She would get them for me. A few times she got ones that I already had.

Well, it's not so much an issue with eBooks. But, still not all books are eBooks. Most of the other books I can generally remember... but after years of reading books and you hear about a book, sometimes it sounds familliar and I would like to check to see if I have read it. Library Thing would work well once I get everything I own/read in there.

I would also like to see a service this Groqit or LibraryThing able to connect to my eBook stores and be able to get my history from each store and add the books to my person inventory.

I think it would take a combination of each eBook site having some type of web service that exposed the books that you have bought from them. So, if you use the Kindle and buy 100% of your books from them, it is pretty easy to look in your media library. But, it would be nice if there was a way that all of my purchases from Sony, Sci-Az, Steve Joren, BAEN, etc, (and d/l's) could be accumluated in one place

One even better service would be for me to be able to get book recos based on my library (a la LibraryThing) AND be able to search all the eBook stores I have registered with them to find the book, at the best price in a format that my device(s) support. Is this asking to much?

BOb
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Old 03-18-2008, 11:48 AM   #2
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Have you tried a PS2 to USB adapter for your Cuecat?

If I had a clue of where to start I'd write a program that would read the metadata of all my ebooks and output that to a spreadsheet. I'd like the program to be able to pluck out thumbnails of the covers, title, author, publisher, publish date, genre, length, file name, and file location. The program would be able to append to the spreadsheet as I acquire new books.

As it is now I started with the csv file from my purchases at Fictionwise and c&ped info from other ebooks sites that actually keep user information and purchases.

I'll put this on my To Do list, maybe I'll have time in a couple of years.
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Old 03-18-2008, 12:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TallMomof2 View Post
Have you tried a PS2 to USB adapter for your Cuecat?

If I had a clue of where to start I'd write a program that would read the metadata of all my ebooks and output that to a spreadsheet. I'd like the program to be able to pluck out thumbnails of the covers, title, author, publisher, publish date, genre, length, file name, and file location. The program would be able to append to the spreadsheet as I acquire new books.

As it is now I started with the csv file from my purchases at Fictionwise and c&ped info from other ebooks sites that actually keep user information and purchases.

I'll put this on my To Do list, maybe I'll have time in a couple of years.
I'd be interested in such a program. I've started my own "manually entered" spreadsheet with less complete data. One problem I've found is the original published date of the book. Often they just give the published date for the ebook, not the original date first published.
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Old 03-18-2008, 02:28 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TallMomof2 View Post
Have you tried a PS2 to USB adapter for your Cuecat?
I have plenty of those. BUT... it converts a PS2 socket to a USB socket... so you can use a "new" USB keyboard connected to a PS2 port. But, I don't have any that go the other way... letting you plus a PS2 keyboard into a USB port. Do they exist?

The other thought was to buy a USB cuecat from librarything.com. They have them for like $12.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TallMomof2 View Post
If I had a clue of where to start I'd write a program that would read the metadata of all my ebooks and output that to a spreadsheet. I'd like the program to be able to pluck out thumbnails of the covers, title, author, publisher, publish date, genre, length, file name, and file location. The program would be able to append to the spreadsheet as I acquire new books.
Have you looked at librarything.com? IT is free and does alot of the above. I think you can export your books to XLS.

BOb
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Old 03-18-2008, 02:29 PM   #5
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I'd be interested in such a program. I've started my own "manually entered" spreadsheet with less complete data. One problem I've found is the original published date of the book. Often they just give the published date for the ebook, not the original date first published.
Have you tried librarything.com? It will info about the books from Amazon and Library of Congress... maybe some other sources that I can't remember.

BOb
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Old 03-18-2008, 02:33 PM   #6
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Librarything.com also has a add-in that allows you to go to Amazon & your purchase history, select a book, then enter it directly using the by clicking on the app. See tool #7 - http://www.librarything.com/tools
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Old 03-18-2008, 04:18 PM   #7
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I use Librarything and like it because once a book is entered, which is a pretty quick process, there is heaps of information available about the book. That means that my wife and I can browse Librarything to decide what to read next without needing to go anywhere else for information.
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Old 03-18-2008, 04:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I use Librarything and like it because once a book is entered, which is a pretty quick process, there is heaps of information available about the book. That means that my wife and I can browse Librarything to decide what to read next without needing to go anywhere else for information.
I was wondering how you would use it for multiple people. Do you each have your own account... or do you have one. Can you have multiple people on each account and indicate which books they've read?

Is there a way to also specify if you "own" a book vs have just read it?

BOb
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:10 PM   #9
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ReaderWare looks up info like the title, author, publisher, cover art, etc. based on the ISBN (in the barcode or manually typed), but doesn't relate different editions of the same book (e.g. ebook, mmpb, hc, etc.). I got it a couple of years ago, and I like the software, but I haven't had time to scan all my books. And it's not easy to do now that they're all in boxes after our move to a house with less shelf space.
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:19 PM   #10
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Is there a way to also specify if you "own" a book vs have just read it?
Librarything will sort and select on "tags", which can be any string you want. For example, I preorder a lot of books from Amazon so I add the book to Librarything when I order it but include "preorder" as a tag so that I can quickly see all preordered books.
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:19 PM   #11
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We both use the same account as a lot of our books interest us both. My wife uses the 'read' field to show when she has read a book and I use the 'started' field (I have been meaning to ask if they can add a second 'read' field). You can set up 5 different 'display styles' defining which fields are displayed and so on. We have both set up a display style to suit us.

There is a field for date aquired which could be used to indicate that the book is owned by you. Alternatively you could just tag the book as 'Owned' or something like that (as Wallcraft has pointed out).

Last edited by keith; 03-18-2008 at 05:21 PM. Reason: Wallcraft's post arrived whilst I was typing mine!
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Old 03-18-2008, 08:37 PM   #12
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Greetings!

I'm one of the principles in Groqit and this thread was pointed out to me today. Looks like it's mainly about librarything, but I'll address a couple points from the Groqit's standpoint.

1. When we researched collectors' software, we saw that it would be extremely difficult to be everything to everybody. We provide basic metadata and you can add memos to each item in your inventory. These are straight text files and you have have more than one per item. Our intention is to be an inventory management tool, first and foremost.

2. I've looked at several of the ebook formats and extracting metadata would be easy in some cases and impossible in others. PDF is a good example. The metadata could be anywhere or nowhere or even a graphic.

3. Versions: we maintain a unique ID for each book. This ID is applied to all versions of the book, regardless of publication date, format or language. We use WorldCat to assist in maintaining the data.

4. Interfaces to other sites. That will come, but I can't say when or in what order. Considering how easy it is to build an ebook site, it should prove a task worthy of Hercules.

5. Searching other sites for price/availability. It's on the development list also.
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Old 03-18-2008, 09:33 PM   #13
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The problem with looking up ebooks based on ISBN is that only 13 out of 1000 ebooks in my Fictonwise csv file actually have ISBNs.

That's why looking at the metadata and extracting the info would be the way to go for most ebooks.

I would have to manually enter in the book title and hope that either Librarything or Groqit could find it at Amazon.

My pbook collection is rapidly dwindling so cataloging that is not top priority.

Last edited by TallMomof2; 03-18-2008 at 09:38 PM. Reason: Forgot a couple of points.
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Old 03-18-2008, 09:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
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I have plenty of those. BUT... it converts a PS2 socket to a USB socket... so you can use a "new" USB keyboard connected to a PS2 port. But, I don't have any that go the other way... letting you plus a PS2 keyboard into a USB port. Do they exist?
BOb
LOL, all the converters I've seen convert the PS2 device so that you can plug it into an USB port.
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Old 03-19-2008, 12:13 PM   #15
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TallMomof2 - We have our own online database. That gives us much faster access and we are not limited to books that are currently for sale. We don't support csv uploads yet, just downloads.

Librarything also supports uploading text files of books. Unfortunately, they only support ISBN's, not barcodes in general. I don't know about their download capabilities, they've changed a bit in the last two years. Groqit reads and supports barcodes and ISBNs. Readerware supports barcode uploads, but doesn't currently interface with our product; so you can upload a barcode file from a Groqit, but not download the metadata for portability.

Last edited by GroqitMan; 03-19-2008 at 12:23 PM.
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