Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Apps for Readers: Catalog Your Library and More!

A couple of months ago I decided to take on the project of cataloging my personal library. No mean feat, as my home is overflowing with real paper books. I also have a large digital collection of ebooks and audiobooks -- I have some of my favorites in multiple formats.

In searching around for information and reviews of apps and programs to help with this task, I ran across this video by an enthusiastic book blogger, "YA bookworm blogger."

She has a lot of great suggestions for reading and book apps. In particular, I picked up "Bookwatch" for my iPhone.  Bookwatch lets you enter your favorite authors, and then keeps track of new releases by those authors as they come out.

For cataloging my own library, I decided to stick with "Goodreads." The advantages include:
  • It's free, cross-platform, and stores your data in the cloud so you can access it from all your devices
  • It's easy to enter books by using your phone's camera to scan ISBNs
  • Goodreads is currently rolling out the ability to add any of your Amazon purchases directly to your Goodreads collection by ticking a box
  • Your book data can be exported to a csv (comma-separated values) file that can be opened as spreadsheet or imported into other bibliographic programs
  • You can import book data from other library software that uses supported file types
My catalog project is probably going to take me years, especially as I keep stopping to reread old-favorites (or at least dust them) as I go. But at least I have the right tools to make it easy!

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