Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Library Thing

For many years, I have been meaning to catalogue my books. It seemed like the right thing to do, but it also seemed like a tremendous amount of work. You would think, since I'm in library school, that this would be the sort of thing that might be fun for me, but it's always a matter of finding the time. Then along came LibraryThing. I discovered it last night via Bookslut, who describe it as "MySpace for people who are over 16 and can spell".

In addition to being a really easy way to catalogue your books (it searches the Library of Congress, the various Amazons and a number of libraries), it also offers the possibility to connect to other people's libraries and offers recommendations based on what others are reading. You can format and view your list in multiple ways, tag your books, and it even has a pretty little author cloud so you can see who dominates your collection (Elie Wiesel stands out in mine). None of these things are revolutionary on their own, but brought together it is a wonderful tool.

I haven't yet completed cataloguing my collection, although in about an hour last night I managed to add 400 books to my list. It is fun going through your collection and thinking back to all the different literary phases in your life ("serious reader", "early Jew", "late teen existentialism", "post-9/11 catch up"). Interesting tidbit: I used to actually read fiction. On a regular basis.

From what I've seen so far, I highly recommend it. It is yet another reason to be glad that we live in the age of the information super highway.

3 comments:

Alex said...

Is LT always that slow?

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