Advertising
Advertising

Review: aNobii for iPhone

Review: aNobii for iPhone

20091029-anobii

    aNobii.com

    is a cataloging and social networking website for booklovers. On aNobii you can catalog your book collection on a beautiful wooden shelf and meet people with similar reading tastes. aNobii has an international following with information on over 10 million books, including 200,000 book reviews spanning 15 languages.

    aNobii has just released an iphone app, and we’ve had a chance to try it out. The bottom line: this is the best iPhone app for booklovers we’ve seen so far.

    Let’s take a closer look at some of the features that set aNobii apart:

    Advertising

    Barcode Scanning

    The barcode scanning feature is a major selling point. Rather than starting from scratch with their own system, aNobii has partnered with Barcode Monster, a startup that focuses on software that enables ordinary webcams to scan barcodes.

    The interface is intuitive. Click on the “Scan” button and you’ll go into camera mode, with a semi-transparent hint that helps you fit the barcode into the right spot. You don’t have to press any button; the app starts scanning automatically when your hand is steady (using iPhone’s accelerometer to detect movements), and stops when it recognizes a barcode. On our first try it took about 5 seconds. We quickly got the hang of it, though, and soon were averaging scans in about a second.

    barcode1
      barcode2
        One thing to note is that when it scans, it keeps making the standard shutter sound. aNobii’s explanation is that Apple does not allow real-time processing of video recording at the moment, so they have to resort to taking still pictures rapidly instead. If you are scanning a bunch of books, the shutter sound can get annoying. You can turn it off by muting your iPhone.

        Another caveat is that barcode scanning is only available to 3Gs users, probably because earlier models lack auto-focus. For those with a 3G or 2G phone, there’s a lite version that has the same features except barcode scanning.

        After a barcode is recognized, the cover and the title appears. Click on the cover to see the details of the book.

        Search

        search

          You can search for a book by entering the title, the ISBN, or by scanning its barcode. We’ve tried a dozen English titles from our office and aNobii has information for all of them.

          Book info

          details

            For each book, you can see reviews, basic details, and which online bookstores are selling it. Not every book we’ve tried had as many reviews as we would like, though. It would be more convenient if there are links to reviews from other websites as well.

            Wish List

            wishlist

              You can make a wish-list of books you want to read. This is a helpful reminder next time you visit a bookstore. This feature is simple and gets the job done.

              Shelf

              shelf

                Using your iPhone as a barcode scanner, you can build your collection quite quickly. While the wooden shelf looks very nice, there seems to be little need to have your collection in your pocket. On the other hand, your mobile shelf will sync with your shelf on the aNobii website, which is more useful as you can share your collection with friends and fellow booklovers.

                aNobii is $1.99 in the iTunes App Store.

                Pros

                • Barcode scanning is fast and easy
                • Intuitive interface to build your collection or wish list
                • Allows you to find reviews handily – great for shopping at bookstores
                • Work seamlessly with the website version (http://www.anobii.com)

                Cons

                • Barcode scanning is limited to 3Gs only (there’s a lite version for 3G and 2G)
                • Social network features available on website are not available on this iphone app

                More by this author

                Leon Ho

                Founder of Lifehack

                Book summary: A Technique for Producing Ideas Finding Your Inside Time 10 Ways to Extend Laptop Battery Life Bob Parsons on His 16 Rules for Survival Free note taking templates and techniques

                Trending in Featured

                1 How to Motivate Yourself: 13 Simple Ways You Can Try Right Now 2 15 Ways to Cultivate Lifelong Learning for a Sharper Brain 3 How to Overcome Procrastination and Start Doing What Truly Matters 4 10 Key Characteristics of a Highly Successful Entrepreneur 5 Why Do I Have Bad Luck? 2 Simple Things to Change Your Destiny

                Read Next

                Advertising
                Advertising

                Last Updated on October 30, 2018

                How to Motivate Yourself: 13 Simple Ways You Can Try Right Now

                How to Motivate Yourself: 13 Simple Ways You Can Try Right Now

                Who needs Tony Robbins when you can motivate yourself? Overcoming the emotional hurdle to get stuff done when you’d rather sit on the couch isn’t always easy. But unless calling in sick and waking up at noon have no consequences for you, it’s often a must.

                For those of you who never procrastinate, distract yourself or drag your feet when you should be doing something important, well done so far! But for the rest of you, it’s good to have a library of motivational boosters to move along.

                Whether you’re starting a buisiness, trying to los weight or breaking a bad habit, you’ll learn how to motivate yourself with different techniques in this article.

                13 Simple Ways to Motivate Yourself Right Now

                Despite your best efforts, passion, habits and a flow-producing environment can fail. In that case, it’s time to find whatever emotional pump-up you can use to get started:

                1. Go back to “why”

                Focusing on a dull task doesn’t make it any more attractive. Zooming out and asking yourself why you are bothering in the first place will make it more appealing.

                If you can’t figure out why, then there’s a good chance you shouldn’t bother with it in the first place.

                2. Go for five

                Start working for five minutes. Often that little push will be enough to get you going.

                3. Move around

                Get your body moving as you would if you were extremely motivated to do something. This ‘faking it’ approach to motivation may seem silly or crude but it works.

                Advertising

                4. Find the next step

                If it seems impossible to work on a project for you, you can try to focus on the next immediate step.

                Fighting an amorphous blob of work will only cause procrastination. Chunk it up so that it becomes manageable. Learn how to stop procrastinating in this guide.

                5. Find your itch

                What is keeping you from working? Don’t let the itch continue without isolating it and removing the problem.

                Are you unmotivated because you feel overwhelmed, tired, afraid, bored, restless or angry? Maybe it is because you aren’t sure you have time or delegated tasks haven’t been finished yet?

                6. Deconstruct your fears

                I’m sure you don’t have a phobia about getting stuff done. But at the same time, hidden fears or anxieties can keep you from getting real work completed.

                Isolate the unknowns and make yourself confident, you can handle the worst case scenario.

                7. Get a partner

                Find someone who will motivate you when you’re feeling lazy. I have a friend I go to the gym with. Besides spotting weight, having a friend can help motivate you to work hard when you’d normally quit.

                8. Kickstart your day

                Plan out tomorrow. Get up early and place all the important things early in the morning. Building momentum early in the day can usually carry you forward far later.

                Advertising

                Having a morning routine is a good idea for you to stay motivated!

                9. Read books

                Read not just self-help or motivational books but any book that has new ideas. New ideas get your mental gears turning and can build motivation. Here’re more reasons to read every day.

                Learning new ideas puts your brain in motion so it requires less time to speed up to your tasks.

                10. Get the right tools

                Your environment can have a profound effect on your enthusiasm. Computers that are too slow, inefficient applications or a vehicle that breaks down constantly can kill your motivation.

                Building motivation is almost as important as avoiding the traps that can stop it.

                11. Be careful with the small problems

                The worst killer of motivation is facing a seemingly small problem that creates endless frustration.

                Reframe little problems that must be fixed as bigger ones or they will kill any drive you have.

                12. Develop a mantra

                Find a few statements that focus your mind and motivate you. It doesn’t matter whether they are pulled from a tacky motivational poster or just a few words to tell you what to do.

                Advertising

                If you aren’t sure where to start, a good personal mantra is “Do it now!” You can find more here too: 7 Empowering Affirmations That Will Help You Be Mentally Strong

                13. Build on success

                Success creates success. When you’ve just won, it is easy to feel motivated about almost anything. Emotions tend not to be situation specific, so a small win, whether it is a compliment from a colleague or finishing two thirds of your tasks before noon can turn you into a juggernaut.

                There are many ways you can place small successes earlier on to spur motivation later. Structuring your to-do lists, placing straightforward tasks such as exercising early in the day or giving yourself an affirmation can do the trick.

                How to Stay Motivated Forever (Without Motivation Tricks)

                The best way to motivate yourself is to organize your life so you don’t have to. If work is a constant battle for you, perhaps it is time to start thinking about a new job. The idea is that explicit motivational techniques should be a backup, not your regular routine.

                Here are some other things to consider making work flow more naturally:

                Passion

                Do things you have a passion for. We all have to do things we don’t want to. But if life has become a chronic source of dull chores, you’ve got a big problem that needs fixing.

                Not sure what your passion is to get you motivated? This will help you:

                How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

                Advertising

                Habits

                You can’t put everything on autopilot. I’ve found putting a few core habits in place creates a structure for the day.

                Waking up at the same time, working at the same times and having a similar productive routine makes it easier to do the next day.

                This guide will be useful for you if you’re looking to build good habits:

                Understand Your Habits to Control Them 100%

                Flow

                Flow is the state where your mind is completely focused on the task at hand. While there are many factors that go into producing this state, having the right challenge level is a big part.

                Find ways to tweak your tasks so they hover in that sweet spot between boredom and maddening frustration.

                Easily distracted and hard to focus? Here’s your solution.

                Final Thoughts

                With all these tips I’ve shared with you, now you know what to do when you’re feeling unmotivated.

                Find your passion and develop a positive mantra so when the next time negativity hits you again, you know how to stay positive and motivated!

                Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                Read Next