Deuteronomy 6:6-7

And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. ~ Deuteronomy 6:6-7

Friday, November 5, 2010

Collectorz - Book Collector

We're all friends here, right? Good, because I have a confession to make. I am terrified of technology. There, I said it. Whew! I feel so much better now. Alright, perhaps I exaggerate a teensy bit, but in all seriousness, most of the time, when it comes to learning about some new software or gadget, I kind of freak out; in my head anyway. Why am I telling you this? Well, because, when I first took a look at this new software by Collectorz, I was a little intimidated. Give me a children's book, a piece of curriculum, a craft project, and I am in my element. But the other stuff kind of scares me ;). Anyway, when faced with this task, I did what I always try to do, face my fears, jump right in, and figure out how this product works. So, read along and I'll tell you about collectorz - book collector.

First of all, what is collectorz? The short answer is that it's a book cataloging system. This is accomplished by either entering the author and title of a book or by entering the ISBN code that is found on your books. Are you wondering what that code is, and where it's located? Good question. Okay, pick up a book and flip it over to the back cover. See that little barcode on the bottom there? That is the ISBN code. It may even say ISBN on it. See? You've already learned something new here. But that's not even the half of it. But I digress. Getting back to business, collectorz uses those little barcodes to keep track of your entire book collection. After a book has been added to the list, the software does a little search of its own and adds a picture of the book, the publisher, the date it came out, the list price, a summary, and even whether it is a paperback or a hardcover. It's almost like your own personal bookstore.

So we know what the purpose is, now, how do we get started? The book collectorz website allows you to take a few very short - and they really are very short! - video tutorials to learn how to navigate the system. You can click on any of the books and see it pulled up into a large picture in front of you. Take all the time that you need to make your way around the page until you feel comfortable with the way that it works. When you're all set with your stack of books, you'll click on the add books icon at the top left of your page. You then have a few options in cataloging your books. You may enter the author and title of each book. If you do this, the list will bring up the list it has of the different versions of that particular book. I never realized how many that could be, but when you consider all of the different publishers, and whether it is a paperback or a hardcover, some of those lists can be quite extensive. So that is one option in getting your books added, but I think you'll agree that it can be a tedious choice. Another way is to type in the books ISBN code. The great aspect of doing it this way is that you very quickly narrow down your list of books that pop up, so that you can select the one you want in short order. This was the option that I used most frequently.

I have to stop for a second and say that when I first began finding my way around collectorz, and started inputting my books, I was not very impressed. Adding all of these books was a lot of work, and at first, I didn't see the point of all of that tedium. "What does this system provide for me?", was my question. Other than having a list of all of my books in one spot, what's the value? Let's start with my first issue, the time consuming task of entering all of the titles, authors, and/or barcodes.

After a short time of typing all of the necessary information over and over, let me tell you, the glow wore off. Then, as I went through the website again, there it was - scanners! Talk about speeding up the process! It's just like checking out at the grocery store, scan the barcode, and the books data is in the system in an instant. There are several available for purchase, and range in price from $14.95 up to $109.95. Check the website to find the one that's best for you. That solved the first issue.

Now, my next point, where's the value? What do I need a detailed list of my book collection for? That's really for all of those super organized people, right? Nope. One obvious advantage is that this helps keep you from buying duplicates of the same book. That, however, is not usually a problem for me, at least with my personal collection. Having said that though, I found that really useful with my daughters book collection. They have a crazy amount of books, and it can be a challenge to remember what we own versus what we've merely checked out at the library. Now, I have a handy list of everything the girls own, whch helps not only me, but friends and relatives who are looking to purchase a book for my daughters.

Maybe you're saying, "Okay, that's great, but it's not exactly convenient to carry a huge list around with me should someone need that information". That might be an issue in some circumstances, but not here, because collectorz is available online, and as an i touch/i phone app. So, if you have access to any of those, - and in this day and age, most of us do, you can easily access your collection.

How about some fun features of collectorz? When you spend any amount of time playing around with the features, I'm quite certain it will win you over. It does so much more than just catalog your books, although the detail it provides in that is amazing. It separates your material according to subject matter and genres. You can open various folders and see how many books you own by a particular author, and this can be displayed through bar and pie charts - I really like those! You can add personal details to each book entry, such as the price you paid or other notes you want to remember. You might even use it to keep track of books your friends have borrowed.

Are you ready to give collectorz book collector a try yet? Do you need more convincing? Listen to this, collectorz offers a free 30 day trial run for up to 100 books. What's better than that? To coin a cheesy phrase, " This baby sells itself ! " I'm confident that you will be won over too.

Allow me to share a few final details. There are a couple of options to choose from. You may choose the standard option for $19.95, which covers all of your basic cataloging needs, or there is the pro option for $39.95, which adds such features like the loan list, the ability to export to the mobile app., and print customized lists. Bundles are also available, and include scanners. Go on and give it a try, you have nothing to lose!

Collectorz - Book Collector

Contact info:

Price: Standard Option - $19.95 Pro Option - $39.95 - Scanners available for additional purchase from $14.95-$109.95

* In return for a trial run of Collectorz Book Collector, I agreed to provide my honest review of the product, with no additional compensation.

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