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Personal book database – LibraryThing

December 13, 2008

I recently started adding books that I own into the site LibraryThing.com, which is a nifty online tool for organizing the books on your shelf.  It is more than just a personal database — you can write your own review and it has a social aspect to it (e.g., discussion forums about specific books). I haven’t had the time to explore those features — for now, I’m simply adding a few books every now and then.

Adding books is super easy — you simply search for the title and/or author and it will typically find it very quickly. It even has options for different covers of books that may have numerous editions so you can get the one that exactly matches your copy. If you click on the image below you can see what I’ve added to date (which is mostly popular science books). There are a bunch more on my shelves that I hope to add over time.

librarything_covers

You can also see the tags I’ve added for the books to get a sense of the kind of books are in my library.

librarything_cloud

When you click on a tag it’ll take you to a global list of other books with that tag. This is a neat way to look for other books you might like — I suppose it’s similar to the people-who-bought-this-also-bought-this features on sites like Amazon or Barnes & Noble, but it is a bit different because it’s created by a community of readers instead of book sellers.

I don’t know if I’ll ever take the time to write reviews and I doubt I’ll participate in the discussion forums, but it’s a nice way to keep track of what I’ve read and what I own but haven’t had a chance to read yet.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. December 13, 2008 12:45 pm

    goodreads.com offers a similar service. love it.

  2. December 15, 2008 4:44 pm

    I saw a Mac product that uses the iCam to read the barcode on the book cover, so that you don’t have to key anything in! Similar functionality otherwise.

    Warmly,
    Joel Orr
    You have a book inside you. I want to help you set it free!
    http://www.joeltrainsauthors.com

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