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Thursday, January 19, 2006

Happy Kitty Catta Loggie

Last month I mentioned some presents I got, among them Mike Nelson's Happy Kitty Pony Bunny. Well, I just found out today that the name of the book is Happy Kitty Bunny Pony. I discovered this when I was cataloging my new books and, being too lazy to scan in the cover, I searched for it on the web.

Happy Kitty Pony Bunny turned up only two hits. One of them was my blog. And the other was a site that put my blog through a "landonizer". Unfortunately, that site is down for "maintenance" (and lawsuits, maybe). I won't link. You can google "happy kitty pony bunny" if you're curious. I couldn't find out much about it, except that Mahmood of Mahmood's Den put his site through it, and says it's "how you'd read this site if you were stoned". I just want to know who Landon is. It turns out, by the way, that this blog is not funnier when you're stoned. Don't know if that's good or bad. (UPDATE: And now the landonized Machinery of Night is gone! Spooky.)

Anyhow, did I mention I was cataloging my books? I have many books. Lots and lots of books. And it's hard to keep track of them all, who wrote what and where they are and so forth. Long, long ago I started keeping an index card catalog (which I still keep). Then, several years ago, I bought some inexpensive cataloging software called SmartTracker Books, which, as you see, has been discontinued. I spent many happy evenings entering the information from the index cards into the catalog.

SmartTracker was OK, especially for the money, but it was kind of limited as to the kinds of things you could catalog (when I bought it, at least). But its biggest drawback was that it ran under Windows, which I rarely use for anything. I think I hadn't booted to my Windows95 partition for something like two years, until the other day.

So I get this new computer, and I install Suse 10.0 on it, which comes with Tellico, a collection organizer that runs under KDE (a Linux windows manager). (Man, you gotta love a site that calls itself "periapsis". Look it up! It's fun!)

I am in love. Tellico is much more flexible than SmartTracker was, and lets you add and name fields. It also lets you add an image of the cover, which is great for those books which have been reprinted a billion times, so that you're never quite sure which edition you have (for those pedantic enough to care about those things). And you can format some fields as tables, which means, for example, you can do a track listing on your CDs, or list the contents of your short story collections. This way, for example, I can finally determine how many different recordings of "Quiet Village" I have (too damn many), or find out which book contains Mirian Allen deFord's "Slips Take Over" (although that's unnecessay, since I already know it's in Worlds of Maybe).

Even better, you can make several different kinds of collections! It comes with options for books, comic books, bibliography, music, videos, coins, stamps, cards, or wine, OR you can make a custom collection. Most of the collecting software I looked at required separate licenses for different kinds of collections.

Now I'm a catalogin' fool. I've got coin, paper money, stamp, and postcard collections, in addition to my books and music. Can't wait to catalog those babies. Or, hey! I could catalog my magazines. And my software! And my data CDs! And my ephemera collection! Oh, and the canned goods! I have to catalog the canned goods.

What's that, honey? Put the computer down and come watch TV? No, no, I'll bring the computer in. That way I can get a start on cataloging those VHS tapes...