Keeping your digital library organized

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Claudiu

Puritan Board Junior
I was wondering how my fellow PBer's keep their ebook/digital library organized. I have a Kindle and will routinely back up the books (mobi files) on my computer. How do you all keep your library organized and/or backed up? At the moment I don't have too many books, but I'd like to develop a system so when I have more books it will be neat and ordered.
 

reaganmarsh

Puritan Board Senior
Mine at present is by folders: ie, Systematic Theology, preaching, church discipline, baptism, counseling, etc. with subfolders (ie, Christology, exposition, restoration, paedobaptism, marriage, etc).

Lately I've begun tagging documents with keywords and just doing a simple keyword search.

I'm sure there's a better way out there and I'm hopeful I'll discover a better approach, perhaps even in this thread.

I'd love a better way.
 

Claudiu

Puritan Board Junior
Mine at present is by folders: ie, Systematic Theology, preaching, church discipline, baptism, counseling, etc. with subfolders (ie, Christology, exposition, restoration, paedobaptism, marriage, etc).

Lately I've begun tagging documents with keywords and just doing a simple keyword search.

I'm sure there's a better way out there and I'm hopeful I'll discover a better approach, perhaps even in this thread.

I'd love a better way.

How do you tag a document?
 

au5t1n

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
I use a particular naming convention to save ebooks: author's last name, first name, then book title. For example, "RutherfordSamuelAPeaceableAndTemperatePlea." This is adequate for my needs. I also save quotations and notes in Evernote and tag them various ways.
 

reaganmarsh

Puritan Board Senior
Claudiu -- I typically save a document into MS Word format if possible, rename it as Lastname, Firstname - Title of Article. I select the appropriate folder, and then under the title (in the "Save As" window) there's the option for tags. I type as many keywords as I think are appropriate and click save.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
I just have a primary folder in Windows Explorer called "books."

Subfolders are by author's name. Titles are usually spelled out as they appear on the title page. I put pdf, txt, mobi, or whatever files under the author's subfolder.

I've found no need for more organization than that on a PC. Windows indexing and search works fine.

Organizing on a Kindle is a bit more cumbersome (at least with older ones)--you can make collections. Usually
I load the latest things I'm reading and delete what I'm not working on, or relegate it to a collection.

The PC is the primary "library." I back everything up daily (all my documents and other works) to several storage devices using the MS synch-toy utility.

I like this method because file architecture is simple and likely to be consistent over the decades.
 

Wayne

Tempus faciendi, Domine.
I also make heavy use of folders. My one minor difference would be in the naming convention for each file:

Last name_date of publication_Title or title short form.

(or last name first initial, if necessary to distinguish).

On the iPad, I like GoodReader for its ability to rename files.
 

Ask Mr. Religion

Flatly Unflappable
My top level computer folder for all theology matters is named "Theologos". Within that folder some 14,000+ files are organized into folders. Here is a pix of the folder structure within Theologos from a year or so ago (I fiddle with the structure from time to time):

http://gallery.myff.org/gallery/1499289/Theologos.jpg (there are sub folders within this structure, too)

I use a similar naming structure for book collections on my Kindle.

I use Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and Sugarsync for cloud based backup, sharing, etc. I backup locally to an external drive, SDCard (for use on my Chromebook Pixel), as well as an extra internal hard drive. One full hard drive image is made each day using ShadowProtect on an automated schedule. (I do consulting work for law firms and am quite paranoid about losing any work products.)

All files are sorted to be viewed by type as I usually know the type of the doc I am looking for: pdf, docx, txt...

When needed, I use X1 or DTSearch software for searching for files by content as they are more powerful than Windows search. Both are wonderful tools.

For theological research and study I use Logos Platinum (and online at biblia.com), SwordSearcher, and WordSearch (and online at mystudybible.com). (For those interested all TNARS faculty are eligible for faculty discounts at Logos. ;) ) I also have the software version of the Puritan Hard Drive and download materials as I need them versus owning the external hard drive product. Many of these I convert to more readable MS Word or better formatted pdf formats using ABBY FineReader and then send to my Kindle.

One of my most valued items, one overlooked by the average user, is my set of browser bookmarks collected since the beginning of web browsers. I regularly export and backup these bookmarks (several thousand and counting). They are likewise organized along the lines of the folders shown above.
 
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jandrusk

Puritan Board Sophomore
This is my process:

1. I connect the Kindle to my PC at least once a week and copy all of the content to a folder that is synched with Google Drive.
2. This in turn backs up all of the content from my PC to my Google cloud.
3. I then have a weekly cron job that rsync's the folder on my PC to an external USB hard drive.

This way for my digital Armageddon to happen for me, my PC would need to die, and/or the Google Cloud we need to evaporate, and/or my USB hard drive would need to burst into flames. So I think I'm covered.
 

Ask Mr. Religion

Flatly Unflappable
How do you view Kindle content outside of the Kindle reader application? I cannot even search the Kindle book content on my PC using X1 or DtSearch? It seems Kindle content is constructed such that searching that content outside of the Kindle reader is impossible. It is a major weakness of owning Kindle books. I want to be able to search them using advanced tools that allow boolean, stemming, and other search techniques, but Amazon has created a walled garden around its books that the user purchases.

I basically gave up on backing up my Gb+ of Kindle content on my PC to the cloud as it serves no real purpose. Sure you may save some time downloading the Kindle books folder when moving to a new PC, but outside of the existence of Kindle reader software at the zombie apocalypse, ;) said content is relatively useless. The Digital Rights Management (DRM) encryption software to the books stands in the way of actually seeing the content outside of Amazon's software. In fact when you pass on to your glory, all this content is lost to you unless you have passed along access rights to your survivors. Makes "owning" a book within Kindle quite unnerving. ;) I have given my son access to my Kindle account for this very reason as I would like my collection of books to survive my demise. My family has one Kindle account and we all just access all the content versus setting up separate accounts. This also saves $$ for Amazon Prime rates, which recently increased. Yes it is annoying for my son to see all of Dad's theology books when he selects books on the "Cloud" on his own Kindle versus his sci-fi proclivities, but at least these books will be available to him in the future.
 
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VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
It is a major weakness of owning Kindle books.

Good point. I can do word searches on DRM Kindle content on my Kindle DX, but haven't found a way to do it on the computer, short of reconverting books--which I am not recommending for DRM protected books.

In my case, the vast majority of my Kindle content is DRM free because I either converted it from open sources or found non-DRM books for purchase. Frankly, I actually only purchase maybe 5 books a year from Amazon, but I see I've collected probably 50+ books this year alone.

I usually find pdfs from sources like Google or archive.org. I've found that Google pdfs are usually not OCRed. That makes them very slow to read on my large-format kindle, and impossible to search. So the first order of business is to run an OCR scan on them to allow it to be indexed.

If the pdf image is good quality, I will convert to html using Adobe Acrobat Pro, and then convert to Mobi for the Kindle. Then I keep the book in all the formats--searching works well with that.

I am hoping the trend of authors releasing Kindle books with non-DRM formatting picks up. Many popular authors find increase sales offset any concerns of piracy.
 
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