Have you ever wished that all your books were written down in one place? Maybe you even started with a spreadsheet and got a couple hundred books entered before you gave up. Maybe you even tried to do a library inventory with the old Readerware software and free scanner popular about ten years ago but terribly clunky to use.
Here’s the thing. We move at least every three years with the USAF, and every time we move we talk about creating an inventory of our books. We tried Readerware. We tried Excel. One year we just decided to take pictures. But through it all, we have always thought it would be really nice to have an inventory software similar to Readerware, but with a great interface and a little easier functionality.
We are preparing for move number 11, and we decided to go looking for something better this time. And we found Delicious Library 3. And if I sound like I’m selling you something, I apologize. I needed this app, and on the off chance that other homeschoolers out there need this app as much as I did — I’m taking the time to tell you about it. Here’s an overview of the features we love.
- Works for more than just books! You can catalog anything with a UPC symbol.
- Scan with your iPhone or iPod or iPad and the Delicious Library 3 Scanner App.
- Scan with the camera on your Computer instead if you like. Use both at the same time even! We’ve had three scanners (iPhone, iPod, Computer camera) going at once.
- Enter numbers directly on your computer if they do not have a UPC that will scan.
- Calculates the current retail value of your collection as you enter items (based on Amazon).
- Categorize your things easily as you scan. (Clara’s bookshelf, Christian Living, Board books, Music, Games, Appliances etc.)
- Import CSV files from old inventory spreadsheets or software.
Here’s how it works. First you download and install the Delicious Library 3 app on your computer. Then, you download the scanner app on the device of your choice (if you don’t have an iOS device you can purchase a scanner online or use the SPEAK function (voice recognition technology) to find your books without even scanning). Next you label the category you are about to scan. Sync your scanner of choice with the computer, and start scanning. Scanning with an iPhone is incredibly easy! I was shocked at how quickly it works compared to the old CAT scanner we used with Readerware. This technology has come a long way! As you scan, keep track of any books that don’t register as they will have to be entered manually. We make a separate stack of those and my fifteen-year-old daughter enters them for us on the computer by finding the ISBN inside the book and typing it in. We have been working through our library with two people scanning and one person entering books by hand at the computer.
In less than an hour today, we cataloged all 163 of the books on my daughter’s personal bookshelf, all of the 50 of the books in the twins room, and all our board games. When we are all three working in the library downstairs, we can finish a full floor to ceiling shelf in about an hour. We only have two and half shelves to go.
There are a few things I am hoping they add in the next upgrade. I’d like to have three different scanners scanning to three different shelves/categories at one time. We would have finished even faster today if I could have scanned to the games category while Clara was scanning to Clara’s Bookshelf category. You can do that if you have more than one computer, but it you only have one computer handy everything scanned goes to the same shelf. I’d like to have access to my library list on my IOS device so that when I’m out and about shopping I can see what I already own. This can be accomplished other ways, but it would be really handy if they would create an iPhone app that syncs with the computer app.
Here are a few other features of this app you might use (that we don’t need.) You can lend books to your friends and check them out from the library on your computer so that you can easily keep track of where yours stuff is. You can upload books to your e-store directly from the library. You can use the recommendations to find new books and music you might love based on your current collection. You can create charts based on category and value. You can print reports out for insurance claims after moves or robbery. You can create bibliographies for your school reports and essays. Delicious Library 3 does practically everything but wash dishes!
My Bottom Line: As I said, I needed Delicious Library 3, and I am so glad we found it. If you need an inventory of your books, your music, or everything you own — this would be the place to start.
Thank You! I have needed this same thing for many years, but never found it. You are such a blessing – thank you for all your research and work.
Amy Blevins says
I’m so glad it was a help!
Bonnie Rose Hudson says
We’re still on Excel, but this sounds incredible!
Definitely checking this out!! Thanks for sharing!
Amy Blevins says
You are very welcome :). We just finished getting all the kids bookshelves in yesterday on the laptop, and it was so easy to import that library into our library downstairs on the stationary computer. Worked like a charm!
I am super excited to try this! I have tried 3 systems to organize our books last year alone. Thanks for sharing!
Amanda Bowen says
Do you know how this compares to collectorz.com or library thing?
Amy Blevins says
I haven’t used either of those. I did use the old software called Readerware, and this is far, far better than that.
Sounds like a great app. Too bad it only works with Apple products.
Sarah @ My Joy-Filled Life says
This sounds amazing! Too bad we aren’t an Apple family. 🙁
Brittany Kennedy says
I was just wondering if you knew how to make the phone sync with the library. I have scanned the barcode on the screen using their app, but I have not been able to have my phone pop up with the green button.
I currently use excel to keep track of our library. I like to keep track of who read which book. I can even sort and print that list for each of my 8 kids. Can this app do anything like that?
Bridget Lewis says
Thank you so much for posting about this!! I am also a spouse of an amazing USAF soldier, or Airman as he has me call him lol and we are about to do our 11th move as well. We have four children and homeschool and books seem to be coming out of our ears lol cannot wait to scan all these in when we finally get them unpacked. We’re currently in Northern Italy and expect to move at least 3ish more times before retiring back in Michigan and having everything cataloged will help tremendously! Thank you!!
Amy Blevins says
I am glad you found this! We found the app to be a lifesaver.
I’m a middle school teacher and came across your site through your “books high school students should read” post. I “lose” probably 15-20 books a year because I didn’t have a great way of keeping track of my inventory. I’m excited to catalog my book collection and check books out to my students instead of them “borrowing”books and not coming back!
Amy Blevins says
I’m so glad you found this solution! It works really well for us. 🙂
Hi, I volunteer at my kids’ charter school library and it’s a mess- old school, write your name on the card that’s in the pocket system for borrowing books. Do you know if this program would let you lend books to 300 students? And can you scan books when you lend them to people or do you do that all through the spreadsheet?