I spent 3 years trying to catalog my library while continuously adding to it. My favorite open-source cataloging software had a habit of routinely crashing on me, especially after I’d just spent five hours configuring everything in excruciating detail, and my second-favorite software just didn’t have that many features. (Pretty much only a funny name…which is how it became my second-favorite.)
When all else failed, you could depend on my computer to have a meltdown.
I figured the writing was (not on) the wall: it’s the 21st century, you Luddite, sacrifice your library data to the cloud.
But Goodreads is Facebook for bookworms, and partially responsible for encouraging my book-induced poverty. LibraryThing is unappealing. And so for 3 years, my library organization levels veered between “piles of books on shelves” and “piles of books on the floor”.
Last night, the answer finally occurred to me as I struggled with a double-whammy bout of marketing ennui and writer’s block. I need to give my library its own website. GitHub, I said! To database or not to database, I wondered. Foolish question, I reminded myself. This is a chance to work on myself, not an excuse to work for myself. (Which is not to say I’m unequivocally opposed to working for Myself. Myself is a great boss; it’s like we always know what I is thinking.)
I just plain refused to touch the source code.
Luckily there’s a certain very popular blogging service that doesn’t let you touch the open-source code powering your site unless you pay for the privilege of doing so.