I like to do business with neighborhood businesses within walking distance, so I recently purchased a copy of Delicious Library from Delicious Monster.Com here in Seattle, Washington. As a company they are more unique since they have no storefront, and do all of their work out of the neighboring Cafe Zoka on Blakeley Street in Seattle Washington. The owners are a spin-off from Omnigroup, makers of Omni Web that is on the same street and whose offices are next door to Cafe Zoka.
Delicious Monster is a personal Library application for Mac OS. Using an Apple iSight web camera or a bar code scanner that Delicious Monster sells, you can scan the UPC or ISBN bar codes on your books and DVDs. A successful scan will trigger a search to Amazon.Com. If there is a successful hit, information on your title will be downloaded to your personal Mac database. If a book cover or DVD image is available it will also be downloaded. Two of the more interesting pieces of data downloaded, are the original list prices of the book or DVD and the current value. Most books and DVDs have current values dramatically lower than the sale price. However, in some cases, the current value is greater. This always produces a smile in your heart!
Now for the fun.We all lend books and DVDs out to friends and colleagues. When you do, you add their name as a loaner from the Mac Address Book. Next, drag the image of the book cover or DVD image over their name. Three things then occur: The item is added to your checked out items book shelf. It records a default loan time of two weeks, and adds the return date as an event to your iCal calendar in a special Library calendar and sends a reminder to to your friend. about the loan and the due date. When the book is returned, you select a menu item, Check In item. The book image is then removed from your checked out list. You may also email all the bibliographic data on your titles to your friend from a button inside Delicious Library. I have used a standalone iSight camera, and an iSight camera integrated into the screens of my MacBook to successfully scan items into my library. It does not take long to get the hang of scanning. You have to pay attention to distance between the barcode and the camera, and ambient illumination. If an initial search for your library item by UPC code does not produce a successful hit in the Amazon database, lookups by ISBN code are an effective backup. There will be times you get a successful hit, but no image of the book cover. Manual cut-and-paste of images of the title elsewhere on the web will work as a substitute.