Delicious Library: Exclusive First Look

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Date: Monday, November 8th, 2004, 17:53
Category: Archive

Delicious Monster announced the release today of Delicious Library, the company’s first product. Ever wish you could make everything you own entirely digital? Well, yes, ideally, you could suck all the clutter in your home into a digital realm, a la Tron, but until then, Delicious Library looks like the next best thing. Scan barcodes with your iSight, or an optional Bluetooth scanner (I’m cheap so I prefer the former), and Delicious Library will query Amazon and track your DVDs, books, music, and games on a virtual bookshelf. I got a chance to catch up with Delicious’ Mike Matas at the O’Reilly OS X Conference and we talked about this cool new software.


Delicious Monster announced the release today of Delicious Library, the company’s first product. Ever wish you could make everything you own entirely digital? Well, yes, ideally, you could suck all the clutter in your home into a digital realm, a la Tron, but until then, Delicious Library looks like the next best thing. Scan barcodes with your iSight, or an optional Bluetooth scanner (I’m cheap so I prefer the former), and Delicious Library will query Amazon and track your DVDs, books, music, and games on a virtual bookshelf. I got a chance to catch up with Delicious’ Mike Matas at the O’Reilly OS X Conference and we talked about this cool new software.
At just 18, Omni Group veteran Mike is the brains behind Delicious. The idea behind Library is a completely simple interface with just the features you need. Having played with Library for a couple of weeks, I can say result is obsessively Mac-like — consistent with the interface of Safari or iTunes, but perhaps more Apple-esque than even Apple software.
Click on Books, Movies, Music, or Games, and a gorgeous virtual shelf shows off your collection. Click on an item, and see details, as well as links to other items. The content is pulled entirely from Amazon.com, from graphics to text to links. My credit card was in danger of Amazon’s links to what other people bought; now it’s screaming in fear.
Library isn’t just a pretty Amazon front-end, though. The killer features so far appear to be search ability (finally, the ability to search music that isn’t in iTunes), and a loaning library to track which of your friends still owes you your favorite book.
This is a 1.0 release, and there are some features I’d still like to see. Sharing collections right now is limited to emailing individual items; Delicious says it’s exploring more sophisticated sharing options. Community possibilities seem to hold the biggest potential, and the best reason to scan in your stuff. Even without these features, though, of the virtual collection applications out there, Delicious Library looks like the one to beat.
So is it worth scanning everything you own to create virtual shelves, or is this just a novelty? Now that the PowerPage has its hands on the final release version, we can digitize our whole collections. We’ll let you know how life is after Library. (And if you’re in New York and want to borrow a book or, say, Metroid Prime, give me a buzz.)

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