Missing functionality? Share your thoughts!

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  • Robert Jan van der Waals

    I need input from all of you for input on which key features are missing or which main problems (not bugs per se, but more in terms of usability issues). I want to A fortify the current product and B add things missing.
    Don't like (parts of) the GUI? Are you missing functionality Y? Please share it here.

    Number 1 on my list is finishing the current Feature Requests as well as the "Generic Importer" to import both Software, Movies, MP3 albums, etc in one go from one Disc/location.

    Number 2 on my list is creating an Android app to search/browse your items and possibly also allwing to lend/return items. This will not be part of the main project "Data Crow" but will be delivered through a separate project.

    • der_Erik

      der_Erik - 2014-01-11


      first of all: a really great program!

      I allready use it for my audio-cd collection. All perfect there. But now i want to use it for my dvd/bluray-collection and kick mymdb. But unfortionatly there are some functionalities i'm missing.

      1) I use my webcam and an EAN-scanner-software to input my new films and audio-cds. Because i'm german i use ofdb to get database-informations. Is there any way to add EAN as search parameter to the websearch formular? Maybe it should get a basic feature? ;)

      2) I want to add a field "fsk" (i don't know the exact corresponding name in english at the moment, it's the legal age for that film) which can take 5 numerical values (0/6/12/16/18).These values are also provided by ofdb if they are unique for that film. Any way to this values to a user defined field?

      3) I would like to put the length of a film provided by ofdb automatiaclly to the "minutes"-field. Any idea for that?

      For my needs 2 and 3 i could imagine a functionality like a table-definition. 2 Rows which define a relation between provided online information and the field in the db which is to hold that value, no matter if it's a basic field or a user defined one...

      I'm really looking forward to it ;)

      Greetings and thanks from Erik from germany

  • Jeffrey Smith

    Jeffrey Smith - 2012-06-11

    * I was going to suggest the Android App. Thinking an advantageous scenario would be users store their database in the cloud on Google Drive or DropBox and you use clients installed on Windows/Ubuntu/Android to access.

    *An asset management module.

  • Seven

    Seven - 2012-06-11

    Headless Webserver mode. ie. be able to run this as a webserver without needing an X server.

  • garoon

    garoon - 2012-06-15

    for me i dont get the filesystem update feature - or better - if i am starting it i never have the feeling it works. also it never came to an end, also not after running for hours.

    with filesystem update feature i mean the functionality to update the db after you have reorganized your files via explorer / filesystem, besides datacrow.

    would be nice to have a simpler and faster system. i tried to limit the compare to filename but this also dont solve it.

    another thing:
    after posting into the bugs section i am wondering if you couldnt make DC error system more "speakable". hope you´ll get what i am trying to say … for me, if you look at my save problem thread, it seems that the DC internals raise an error but the user wont get it. fine you did execption handling, but would be more awesome to have this tranformed into a user friendly error message so i could remove the groundlying problem.

    after checkin the logs for finding my source problem, i noticed there are a bunch of exceptions, like parsing exception during the import. in the UI i never get something about that. maybe i looked wrong ,,, dunno :(

  • Robert Jan van der Waals

    Hi Garoon,

    Many of the exceptions you will find in the log are not shown to the user for a reason; in most cases the issue is handled internally by Data Crow (especially the case when parsing files - if the information cannot be retrieved it cannot be retrieved).

    The help file gives a good description of the file system update. In any case;it is a continous service and will run for as long Data Crow is running. If you have a description of something that is not working please raise a bug report for this as otherwise I can't fix it.


  • Rurik Christiansen

    I would really love to see SQL import and export.

    CSV is way too difficult in its simplicity ;) and XML is awfully difficult to change with simple scripts and tools.

    The advantage of SQL is that is still humanly readable while maintaining a reasonable structure. It can be easily modified with plain text tools like sed and vim.


  • Anonymous - 2012-11-12

    Some improvements listed here

  • MJBS

    MJBS - 2013-01-24

    Hi Robert Jan,

    I would like to see a single person table, so persons can be shared amongst the various modules. I have a number of actors that are also directors, authors and even musicians, it would be good to only have to add a person once.

    Similarly, with companies, such as publishers (games/books/cds) and developers.

    Love the new look website!

    • Robert Jan van der Waals

      I agree with this; having persons that could be shared is a good idea. I'll have to give this some thought;
      - Would all persons always be selectable as actor/director/etc? or
      - Would you indicate on the person what he can be

      I can see the list of persons becoming quite long.

  • djaida

    djaida - 2013-01-28


    I'd like to see some improvement in the loan administration area, especially for Contact persons. Right now when I double-click on a contact person then go to the loan administration tab, I see all the books loaned to all contact persons, rather than just books that particular person borrowed.

    Another thing I would find really useful would be batch editing. I didn't have a clear understanding of what containers were so I did not use them, but now I do and have started adding my books to containers. Since I have a large amount of books (over 1200), I would like to be able to select several books and assign them to a container without changing any other data about them (though this would be useful for categories as well).

    (Unless this already exists and I am not aware of it??)

    I also think the new look of your website is great!

  • Robert Jan van der Waals

    The update all functionality might be quite useful for you. Right-click on an item in the overview and select 'Update all' to update multiple items at once.

    For the administrations of loans did you ever use the "administration">"Loan administration" overview?


  • djaida

    djaida - 2013-02-05

    Hi Robert, thanks for replying.

    I was under the impression that "Update all" was for updating metadata from the internet, not local changes, so I didn't try it. I just did, and it works like a charm; thank you!

    Yes, I did, and I'm embarrassed to say that I completely missed that I can sort users by choosing "Lend by". I'm used to sorting by clicking the header row in the View settings panel. I sort it by UDC, and then I'm able to shelve books by the subject they belong to.

    I will have to read about creating reports some more, because I'd like to be able to print catalog records on stock cards and call numbers on stickers; it would be neater than doing it by hand. If I figure it out, I'll make a feature request.

  • Carl

    Carl - 2013-02-06

    Hello Robert!

    My "usability issue" would be: the lack of built-in support for multiple users / family-oriented usage.

    There must be many users - or potential users - of Data Crow who share their media collection with other members of their family. So, what happens when more than one person want to add their rating of the movie they just watched together, for example?

    Of course, having multiple copies of the Data Crow database - one for each family member who wants to add their own take on the movie (comment, last viewed info, rating) - is one way to go, but then you won't be able to see everyone's opinion in the same view (for example if the family wants to list all movies that have gotten a rating of at least X from all who are about to sit down for a movie night together). Also, I'm sure there's a way (for a power user?) to extend Data Crow to handle multiple users' input on media in the collection, but since there are SO many people who share their lives, as well as their media collection, with one or more other persons - wouldn't it be reasonable to have this functionality built-in?

    EDIT: Actually, I should make it clear that I understand that one can add extra fields (such as "RatingPerson1", "RatingPerson2" etc) directly in the collection - but what I am looking for is a way to have this in a module tied to the User module, so that each user's comments, ratings etc are tied both to a specific user in the User module and to a specific movie in the collection.


    P.S. I love what you have done to the site, and all the effort you have put into Data Crow updates lately!

    Last edit: Carl 2013-02-20
  • djaida

    djaida - 2013-02-11

    I did a search for a feature which would be useful for me and possibly others, which is reservations. Is it possible to create a field that would allow a contact person to reserve a book via the web server? Or, as suggested in selfcheckout thread, to use self-checkout via the web server - a student could check out a book online, then come to the library to pick up the book when convenient. The web application would show the book as being signed out to student so and so, and others would be unable to check the book out.

  • David

    David - 2013-02-17

    I've been considering Datacrow for a few years, but it's still missing the functionality I require. I'm looking for a way to catalog personal media along with commercial media. For example categorize a couple hundred home movies on DVD's, along with purchased movies. Wii games and a few hundred data DVD's, such as my laptop OS recovery DVD's and backup DVD's full of pictures which I also have on my harddrive, etc.

    Some general suggestions as you think about development in the next few years:

    1) Determine if media is virtual(electronic) or physical(media of some sort) This will take the program to the next level. A physical book is very different from an e-book and an e-book is different from an audio book. Very different characteristics, but essentially they are all the same medium. Physical media needs to be stored somewhere...numbered, sorted, described, etc. Virtual media needs to be accessed...by machine name, url, cloud provider, etc.

    2) Each medium should come with metadata parsers which can improve over time. This can compartmentalize development. I realize some exist today. The easy one might be title and artist parsing on a MP3 file. Photos have more advanced metadata which can be parsed using "exiftool" pulling camera, GPS location, or name tagging on facebook, etc. Even more advanced might be parsing the text in the subtitle file of a movie. Consider a configuration setting for the amount of metadata which would be cataloged.

    3) It's great how you can pull from IMDB etc. To further reduce the required number of keystrokes consider scanning the medium so the user doesn't have to go through 10 versions of the movie on Amazon. This could be automated by comparing the DVD ID, region, movie time, etc.

    4) Think about various resolutions and copies. I may have a movie on VHS, Blueray, an electronic HD copy on a media server, and a highly compressed version on my android. If I play the movie on my media server, I need the uncompressed full screen version. I may have a song in mp3 format, but I may also have the music video of the same song.

    5) Think about the portability of data over time as we approach cloud and lower cost of storage. Over time I will take many home movies now on DVD and move them to electronic storage as $ per GB/TB continues to fall. The physical DVD's will then only be backup media. Or they may get moved up to the cloud. Over time many users may move to a virtual desktop, and searching for media will all be done up in the cloud. They may think of their playlist on YouTube as something searchable, or photos on Flickr/Facebook, etc.

    I've been using the program Cathy on windows for my physical media. I'd like to move to datacrow as scanning of media becomes possible. eg: scan home dvd, home data dvd, etc.

  • charles

    charles - 2013-02-17

    Consider simplifying the various views and settings for each view. There is a lot of duplication in the views being able to show the same thing. It makes learning how to setup your own module very confusing.

    Last edit: charles 2013-02-17
  • bill

    bill - 2013-03-12

    I'm not sure if this is already a feature but if I run Data Crow on my server where my inventory is also located, how can I also set up Data Crow on another computer and access the same items?

  • Gimli_Gloin

    Gimli_Gloin - 2013-03-16

    you rejected my request for V3.x. So I try again to get it in V4:

    Please support real international charctersets!

    Every new version I am doing the same simple test:

    Create a module
    Name : "Meine Bücherei" (German for "My Library")
    Item Name : Buch (Book)
    Item Name (plural): Bücher (Books)

    What I get is: see screenshot attached


    Last edit: Gimli_Gloin 2013-03-16
  • Chris Lidgate

    Chris Lidgate - 2013-11-19

    Hi Robert

    Here's a thought - a 'Download media' button on the web server item line.

    It probably needs to work as follows

    1) A new user permission bit 'User is allowed to download'. If set the user will see the download button, if not the button is not created on the web page

    2) When the item is built to populate the item table on the web page, if the download permission is set, and if the item is a media file, and if the file can be read at it's reported location, add the download button to the item table (along with the 'Art work' and 'Details' buttons).

    3) If clicked the button will download the file to the web browser.

    Any interest ?

    -- Chris

    • Robert Jan van der Waals

      Hi Chris,

      Yes, definitely. After the 4.0 version has been released I will be working on a brand new web service implementation. This will definitely be part of the new functionality.


  • Arj0n

    Arj0n - 2013-11-28

    Hi Robert,

    I'm using the software module (for years already) and I was wondering if the following could be implemented:
    For covers and screenshots you can copy an image (for example from a web-page or from an image editor) and paste it using 'add from memory' option.

    Let's say I have 2 screenshots in the slots 'Screenshot One' and 'Screenshot Two'.

    Now I remove the screenshot from slots 'Screenshot One' and want to change/replace the image from slot 'Screenshot Two' to slot 'Screenshot One'.
    This can be done by:
    1.: saving the screenshot from slot 'Screenshot Two',
    2.: remove the image from slot 'Screenshot Two' and then
    3.: browse to the file and
    4.: load it in slot 'Screenshot One'.

    What I would like to see is that you can ALSO 'add to memory' so that it is easier to replace an image from, for example, 'Screenshot Two' to 'Screenshot One'.
    Then I only have to:
    1.: Load the screenshot from slot 'Screenshot Two' into memory,
    2.: remove the image from slot 'Screenshot Two' and then
    3.: load the image from memory into slot 'Screenshot One'.

    This would be a nice and handy little feature.


    • Robert Jan van der Waals

      Hi Arjon,

      You're in luck! With Data Crow 4.0 it will be a lot easier to "tag" an image. I am also adding drag and drop support. Essentially, in edit mode, the pictures will be a simple listing. From there you can name an image. In "view" mode, the images are shown in tabs, in the order as defined in the listing.

      Hope this makes sense.. :)


  • Arj0n

    Arj0n - 2013-11-28

    Hi Robert,

    First, thanx for your feedback.

    I think naming images will do the job I was looking for.
    Now they 'get' a name (like 'Picture Front') depending in what slot you place them (Picture Front, Picture Back, Picture CD, Screenshot One, Etc...)
    So then the ability to name them manually will be great.

    And yes, drag'n'drop will definitely also be a nice feature :-)

    I'll be looking out for v4!

    Another question (although I do not know if you also work on search scripts):

    While using the software module and the mobyscrape script:
    After entering a search name and clicking 'Find', the script start showing results from several available systems.
    Once I select a result and click the button 'Next' the search script starts retrieving the information for this item BUT the script ALSO keep searching for more results.

    Is this on purpose? Otherwise I expect the script to stop searching once hitting the button 'Next'. (This also might reduce datacrow resources a little bit?)

    Last edit: Arj0n 2013-11-28
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