PaperBackSwap Blog


Posts Tagged ‘Bookshelf’

New Features: Newsletter – September 2008

Sunday, September 7th, 2008

Happy Birthday to PaperBackSwap.  Looky looky at your presents.  No, you can’t exchange them.  No, we don’t have them in a different color.  Click What’s New at the top of any page on the site, or go to the Help Center and read the items under What’s New to keep up with what features have been newly added to the site.

Bookshelf Header. New feature.  The Bookshelf Header allows you to add a custom, publicly-viewable message at the top of your PBS Bookshelf.  You can introduce yourself – give an overview of the types of books you have –  comment about a specific book you have posted – invite members to join your Game in the Games Forum – or just say Hello!  Read more about this feature here.

Book Notes. New feature. Book Notes allow you to write a private (only you can see it) note on any book in the database.  No matter where you are on the site when you apply the note, you will see the note (which appears as a yellow sticky-note applied to the book cover) pretty much everywhere you see the book, and putting your cursor over it will show the note. Read more about this feature here.

Yahoo Address Book LinkNew Feature.  We have had terrible trouble with Yahoo not delivering PBS emails lately.  The Yahoo server will accept the auto-emails from our server but then doesn’t deliver them!  This is at least partly being caused by Yahoo members clicking “Mark as Spam” on PBS emails (which can affect the reception of PBS emails for ALL Yahoo users at PBS).  Adding the PBS auto-email addresses to your Yahoo address book should solve this problem for an individual member.  We have provided a link for our members who use Yahoo.  Go to your Account Settings in My Account, and beside your email address (if you use Yahoo) will be this link: Yahoo Mail users: Click here to ensure receipt of PBS emails. Click that, sign into Yahoo if you need to, click on the next page, you’re done.  That will keep those Wish List offers and book request emails coming to you.

DEAR R&R, Newsletter – March 2008

Sunday, March 2nd, 2008

Dear R&R–What the heck are all those tag things on book listings?  They bug me. I can’t make any sense of them.  Some are just abbreviations, some are people’s names, and some say things like “autographed copy”!  Does that mean that every copy of the book available in the system is an autographed copy?  Will I get an autographed copy if I order a book that has that tag on it?  What is going on here?–Tag-sick in Tulsa

Dear Tully,

Ah, the Tags.  So many members use them in so many ways.   The Tags can be used as personal notations–you can tag a book your sister recommended as “recommended by Tally”, or a book you want to take to the beach as “for Maui 2008”.    They can also be used as descriptors for the general book: you can describe the genre (“historical fiction” or “Paranormal romance”),  or the main character type (“colorblind protagonist” or “techno-geek main character”) or the setting (“set in texas” or “urban setting” or “Nova Scotia”) or even your personal recommendation (“great for 9 year old boy”, “better than the movie”).

Personal tags are less likely to be applied by many members, and so they won’t all show to all members once enough tags have accumulated for a book listing (only the top 15-used tags for a book listing will show to all members; each member’s applied tags always show to that member).  General tags are more likely to be applied by many members, and are intended to be helpful to the membership–they can give information about the book in general.  Clicking a tag on a listing for “set in texas” for example will bring up all of the books tagged this way with one click.   Which is nice if you are looking for a book set in Texas.

There is a problem with some tags: some members are trying to use them to describe their particular copies of the book–they are apparently unaware that this is ineffective and even confusing to requestors.  Books at PBS are requested in FIFO order.  So “Missing Dust Jacket” and “Autographed copy” can be applied by anyone to any book listing, but that will not mean that if you request that book your request will go to the member who applied that tag.  Ignore the tags that seem to describe particular copies of books.  All books posted at PBS should meet basic condition requirements; if requestors want to define more specific requirements, they need to use Requestor Conditions.

We have one member who is determined to improve the use of Tags on the site!  Kudos to Jane K. (mahbaar).  She has various “Tag Missions” to make Tags useful to the membership.  Jane, your industry and organizational abilities make our heads spin!  Check out Jane’s Tag Missions by searching the Discussion Forums for “Making Tags Useful” or go to any of the threads directly:

Mission #1Mission #2Mission #3, Mission #4, Mission #5, Mission #6, Mission #7, Mission #8, Mission #9Mission #10

You can also turn tags off completely in your account settings, if you like.  You can read more about the Tag feature in the Help Center (search the Help Docs for “Book Tags” or just “Tags”).  We do have some improvements and expansion planned for this feature; these are on our list of things to get to in our continuous process of upgrading the site.

Dear R&R–I am what is known as a “snowbird” –I have two residences, each of which I live in part of the year.  Obviously, I have books in both places.  How can I manage my PBS Bookshelf to show only those books I have access to while I am in one of my homes?  Do I have to unpost my whole bookshelf and repost the books each time?  –Peripatetic PBSer

Dear Perry,

Good news!  Since the Bookshelf Upgrade, you are now able to put individual books on hold on your bookshelf.  Which means you can put the summer books on hold just before you move to your winter location, and vice versa.  When you are getting ready to head to your warm-weather locale, go to your bookshelf and click to place a checkmark in the boxes next to those books you will be leaving in your winter home.  Then click the Hold button on the top right of the Bookshelf to apply the hold to those books.  You should put your whole account on hold while you are in transit (so you don’t miss any requests or Wish list books); then when you get to your Winter location, you can unHold whatever books you have with you that you want to swap, and also UnHold your account.   This will save you lots of posting-unposting-reposting time.  You can even use the Tags (see above) to tag your books with codes for your two homes, so it’s easy to tell which ones are where.

You can read more about the recent changes to your Bookshelf in the Help Doc Bookshelf Upgrade under What’s New in the Help Center.

Ooh, we want two houses, too!  Wait…um…that would mean two houses to maintain, and two mortgages….okay, we still think it’s neat that you do this, Perry, but when it gets cold, we’ll just put on a sweater. 🙂

Dear R&R–Did you know that most paperback books/board books/dust covers can be cleaned up with ordinary rubbing alcohol dabbed on with a soft white cloth?  It makes them looks almost like new, takes off sticky stuff and most smudges.  —Marie T.

No we sure didn’t Marie, but now we do! Thanks for telling us.  We are sure many members will find this tip useful!

Bookshelf upgrade. Newsletter – February 2008

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

The Books to Repost area was under-utilized; it was a duplication of the TBR pile in some ways, and members weren’t using it very much.   In the spirit of efficiency, we have combined  the Books to Repost with your Bookshelf–now each time you mark a book received without a problem you have the option to have it put onto your Bookshelf on hold, for easy one-click reposting later on.  The default setting is to add the item to your bookshelf on hold–you need to choose Yes to prevent this from happening when you receive a book. You can view only Hold items, only Posted items, or All items, and you can sort All items to show posted at the top of the list.  Read more about the changes to your Bookshelf in the Help Doc Bookshelf Upgrade under What’s New in the Help Center.

Your List of Lists. Newsletter – May 2006

Thursday, May 4th, 2006

Did you know that you have access to nine different kinds of lists from your account page? Here is a list of those lists, what they do, and where to find them:

(1) Active Transactions (books outgoing from you or incoming to you)
located on your Account page. Just log in and scroll down.

(2) Completed Transactions (books that have been received by you, or sent by you and received by others), accessible from the right-hand side of your account page. Just log in and click Completed Transactions on the right.

(3) Books I have Read (books you have read), accessible from the
right-hand side of your Account page. Just log in and click Books I
have Read on the right.

(4) TBR Pile (= Books To Be Read; books you have received from PBS and have yet to read), accessible from the right-hand side of your Account page. You can repost books to your bookshelf directly from this list; the big red W by any book means that another member is currently wishing for this book—you might want to read it sooner, so that you can send it out!
Just log in and click TBR Pile on the right.

(5) Wish List (books you want to order that are not currently available
in the system), accessible from the right-hand side of your Account
page. Just log in and click Wish/Reminder List on the right.

(6) Reminder List (books you are considering ordering, whether
currently available or unavailable), accessible from the right-hand side of your Account page. Just log in and click Wish/Reminder List on the right, then click the Reminder List tab.

(7) My Bookshelf (books you are offering for swapping), accessible
from the right-hand side of your Account page. Just log in and click My
Bookshelf on the right.

(8) Books Lost en Route to Me (books that were not marked received by
the System Action Date for the transaction), available from a link at the top of your Completed Transactions page. You can, and should, mark “lost” books received from here, if they arrive (and they often do). Just log in and click Completed Transactions on the right, then click the link at the top of the page, “Books Lost en Route to Me.”

(9) Canceled Transactions (all cancellations, coming to you or going
from you, associated with your account for the past 45 days), accessible from a link at the top of your Completed Transactions page. Just log in and click Completed Transactions on the right, then click the link at the top of the page, “Canceled Transactions.”