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Old 04-09-2009, 10:34 PM   #1
timezone
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Folder organization question

I have a question about folder organization. This can apply to any subject area. In my case it relates to programming and novels. At the moment I have programming books organized by publisher because each one has their own style. For example people that know Apress, Sitepoint and the Headfirst series of books know they have very different styles of writing. Of course at a certain point it might make more sense to organize by web development and programming for example rather than by publisher. Then there are the novels. Once I have a few books by a particular author I prefer organizing by author. However for non-fiction books it may make sense to organize by subject matter, similar to how I might end up organizing my programming books.

At this juncture I may have two or three dozen books. Before I buy too many more books I was wondering how other people organize their books . I know there are people out there with hundreds of books. How do you organize your folders and do you create a large number of shortcuts to jump into the different directory levels? Do you follow any soft rules that say you won't create x number of folders down from the root directory? Are there any unique ways of keeping things organized and relatively flat so that one doesn't have to traverse too many levels of directories?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-09-2009, 11:53 PM   #2
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I usually do a Subject->Category->Author (or Sub-category)->Title thing for my 300GB+ collection. For instance, Novels/SciFi/Vance/BlueWorld.pdf, Math/Geometry/Differential/Foundations-Michor.djvu or Comics/Manga/Berserk/Chapter01.cbr. That way, novels, which you will probably want to access by Author, are indexed correctly but do not end up being too cluttered, as they are divided into SciFi, Fiction etc., while textbooks are still indexed by subject. Other unrelated things like comics and journal articles live in their own tree.

Unfortunately, with folder organization, you cannot cross list items (such as by both publisher and topic). I tried using shortcuts by keeping my *real* collection tucked away in a bunch of folders and indexing the collection in different ways with shortcuts, but creating it can be a real pain.

Otherwise, one would need to come up with an indexing application that lets you search/browse your library (and preferably integrate it into the CTB). I've never tried exploring it, but how powerful is FBReader's library? I don't think there are any universal "ID3 like" tags for e-books like there are for audio files, so we'd need something to index stuff intelligently.

For quick reference lists, I usually dump a bunch of shortcuts into a folder, like a playlist. This should keep you from traversing too many trees. The redundancy in the index hurts my sense of efficiency though, would love a better solution Of course, once we get an SD card-wide search function onto the DR (should be zippy for pre-indexed content), we needn't bother with organizing stuff too much. Would love to see a 'recently used documents' list.

Last edited by Grimulkan; 04-09-2009 at 11:59 PM.
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Old 04-10-2009, 01:19 AM   #3
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I just have a folder for each genre and make the ebook filenames '<Author Surname> - <Title>.pdf'. This way the books are arranged by author name and there aren't too many folders to dig through.

I would much prefer a FBReader style system which enables ebooks to be given multiple tags, but most of my books are PDFs which FBReader doesn't support.

I'm currently writing a desktop program which manages my ebook collection like iTunes manages music (so whenever you plug your digital reader in, your library is automatically synchronised). I might incorporate Grimulan's neat idea of using shortcuts to link to ebooks from multiple folders.
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Old 04-10-2009, 07:46 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grimulkan View Post
Unfortunately, with folder organization, you cannot cross list items (such as by both publisher and topic). I tried using shortcuts by keeping my *real* collection tucked away in a bunch of folders and indexing the collection in different ways with shortcuts, but creating it can be a real pain.
Although this is a good idea (I guess you talk about symbolic or hard links) you cannot use this method for Irex because as far as I know the SD card must be formatted as FAT32, which does not support symbolic and hard links.
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Old 04-10-2009, 08:54 AM   #5
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Although this is a good idea (I guess you talk about symbolic or hard links) you cannot use this method for Irex because as far as I know the SD card must be formatted as FAT32, which does not support symbolic and hard links.
I was referring to actual .desktop shortcuts, hence the reference to it being a real pain. These are handled by the OS, not the filesystem.
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Old 04-10-2009, 11:01 AM   #6
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I was referring to actual .desktop shortcuts, hence the reference to it being a real pain. These are handled by the OS, not the filesystem.
Now I see what you mean. Indeed, up to now I didn't realize it was possible to create shortcuts in folders different than the root one.
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Old 04-10-2009, 04:40 PM   #7
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Content (or at least file locations) should be stored in an SQL db for fast indexing and cross referencing. The hierarchical folder approach has its limits.
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Old 04-11-2009, 11:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grimulkan View Post
Subject->Category->Author (or Sub-category)->Title Novels/SciFi/Vance/BlueWorld.pdf
Math/Geometry/Differential/Foundations-Michor.djvu
Comics/Manga/Berserk/Chapter01.cbr.

That way, novels, which you will probably want to access by Author, are indexed correctly but do not end up being too cluttered, as they are divided into SciFi, Fiction etc., while textbooks are still indexed by subject. Other unrelated things like comics and journal articles live in their own tree.
I think I might leans toward
Category->Author->Title
Ex. Novel->David Balducci->title
This is somewhere between Grimulkan and epiphany. epiphany appears not to include subject. In my mind I prefer thinking of it as Category->subject.

Just based on the author I will know if it is fiction or non-fiction. If I can easily recognize the Subject matter then I won't need that division until the listing crosses over one or more pages. Then as the collection grows I will want to add an additional level of complexity and organize it as
Category->Subject->Author->title acknowledging the clutter comment.

Not sure I am ready to commit to the organizational setup just yet but I have to do something soon. I didn't like my breakout by publisher for the programming books for the long haul but in the short term it made sense.

Thanks for all the ideas. It is also refreshing to discuss how we use the device rather than always discussing everything that is not working or wrong with it.
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Old 04-11-2009, 05:35 PM   #9
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I have mine mostly categorized by function: Fiction, Non-Fiction, Manuals, Newspapers, Manga, Personal Docs etc., and a separate FBReader folder since those documents can't really be used by the standard DR1000 software anyway. Then, if several if the books are part of the same set/series I may have a subfolder for it.

That's good enough for now, I don't have too many books, and it limits the number of click-throughs. Also keep in mind that the list/details view allows one to see many more documents on the same page (plus added info)
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Old 04-13-2009, 11:49 AM   #10
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I group mine by Series/Subject, but I don't typically keep a large number of them on the device at any one time. Usually it's just what I'm reading currently, or what I plan on reading in the near future. Long term storage/archival of books is done on my PC.
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Old 04-16-2009, 12:41 AM   #11
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Since iRex DR1000s could support 16G SD card, it could become a powerful digital library if it had some features as iTune's playlist.
Maybe someone would develop such tool in the future.
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Old 04-16-2009, 08:56 PM   #12
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I have a couple of dozen books and my 8GIG is only at 8% used. I will have a massive library well before I need a 16GIG if I get to that point. It is my fear the organizational structure will become increasingly difficult to manage as the library gets larger.

At the same time the reader will provide some great assistance even with some everyday issues. Like converting web restaurant menu's to PDF or downloading product manuals and storing the PDF files on the reader.
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Old 04-17-2009, 12:17 PM   #13
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At the same time the reader will provide some great assistance even with some everyday issues. Like converting web restaurant menu's to PDF or downloading product manuals and storing the PDF files on the reader.
Whenever I found something interesting, I print them into pdfs with a predefined word template and sync them with the SD card later.
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