Collector One - Simple Collection Database App

Discussion in 'Whatever' started by Mr Fox, Mar 17, 2021.

  1. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    A bit of a heads-up, that I hope may help someone.

    I've been looking for a simple cataloguing app for awhile and most seem to have followed the pay-to-use model (annual subscription), be exorbitantly expensive (wanting payment based on amount of items you catalogue) or be overly complex (often trying to pre-populate the database with existing product lines or having a myriad of pointless tabs).

    My goal was to find something that allowed for basic information and to assign a photograph to each piece of a collection. Yesterday I stumbled across 'Collector One', which really is the digital version of a simple card cataloguing system. Unfortunately, it is buried deep within the iTunes shop and therefore, isn't an app you stumble across unless you were willing to scroll through pages of promoted, irrelevant, software.

    Firstly, you can set up multiple collections - for instance a catch-all like 'Sofubi' or, if you'd rather, drill down into genre you can do that.

    Once you've set up the Collection heading, you can start adding items (here are a couple of sample shots - which are not as crisp as the app is because of re-sizing them to post):

    [​IMG]

    In simple terms, you can Name the item, write notes to describe it (I've used this to denote source of original sale: festival, lotto, dates, etc), additional information (price (good for insurance purposes) or anything else you deem relevant and lastly, you can create categories and groups within the collection, which I have used for maker.

    [​IMG]

    Once populated, you can search on any keyword, via the list of items or refine by the category or group:

    [​IMG]

    The developer is open to feedback and I've made three suggestions:

    1) it would be nice to have a dedicated price/value field
    2) multiple photos per item would be helpful to allow headers to be photographed alongside the toy
    3) a way of exporting the data, so that you can preserve a hardcopy

    He has already confirmed that an export function is something he is currently working on and the aim is to export in CSV and also PDF.

    I paid circa $5.00 for the app and that seems very reasonable to me.

    Given the previous conversations on here about what could/would happen to people's collections on here should something happen to the individual (legacy and understanding value) or how to approach an insurance claim should you be in the unenviable position to have to make one, this seems like a simple solution.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
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  2. EtR_Wolf

    EtR_Wolf Comment King

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    If only this were around when I started collecting! Thanks for sharing this. Do you know if the data that toy ever is for personal use only or is this data shared with anyone who uses this app? (For instance, can I see the items that you have cataloged? )

    Thanks again for sharing this, it does seem very useful!
     
  3. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    I too wish I'd found it awhile back and my collection is, I am sure, a lot smaller than yours. My plan is to start by adding anything new and then slowly working through the more valuable pieces (for insurance) as mood, or time, allows. The upside is, it is so easy to add a piece, hence wanting to mention this app on here. The fact you can take a photo from within the app and assign it to the piece saves a big chunk of time.

    There is no sharing element to it - it is solely for your use. When he adds the export function, you could send that file to someone and they could put it into any CSV reader but I know that isn't what you meant by 'sharing'. :)

    My guess is that the moment you allowed viewing and sharing of collections, you'd need a shared cloud based server, which would mean annual fees. You'd also enter into the realms of data security and possibility of misuse of information. Personally, I liked how simple, and inexpensive, this app is; if I want to share, I'll post the photos on here :mrgreen:
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
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  4. EtR_Wolf

    EtR_Wolf Comment King

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    @Mr Fox , for sure. I can imagine that they would have to add a yearly subscription or a larger fee for cloud sharing. I just love looking at toy databases that list names, makers, dates, and prices if possible. It's really hard to find proper databases like this, so that's why I was wondering if we could just type in "sofubi" or "Sunguts" or whatever and have the info and photos pop up.

    Skullbrain is fantastic for finding information about toys, but it isn't quite the same as a catalog. You need to sift through a ton of pages to find a lot of the toys, colorways, names, dates, etc. So it would be nice if there was one master catalog or there dedicated to the ever growing world of sofubi, from vintage to future, that would be amazing!

    And yes! That is a fantastic idea of working your way from what you just recently have obtained to older toys that you have. There are many toys now that I have collected in the past that I have no idea what I paid for anymore, and a few that I have completely forgotten names of. Adding header cards to the photos is a great idea to keep them straight. I used to take photos of the toys with the header cards, but those photos have been lost unfortunately too a crashed hard drive.

    Thank you again for sharing this catalog app, it will most definitely come in handy!
     
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  5. Roger

    Roger Prototype

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    Where exactly is the data (records, photos, etc.) stored and what does the user agreement say about how it's used?
     
  6. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    According to Apple, the developer collects no data from the app. As for storage, all data the user enters is stored on the local phone or the users iCloud account.
     
  7. akum6n

    akum6n Vintage

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    I use Excel.
     
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  8. Biff

    Biff S7 Royalty

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    Can I scan my toys with my phone like discogs?
     
  9. Roger

    Roger Prototype

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    This is actually a good application for the NFC tags that we discussed a little while ago.
     
  10. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    You can photograph from within the app and assign the photo to the item (in this case a toy).
     
  11. hellopike

    hellopike S7 Royalty

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    This sounds pretty good. It checks my boxes if it’s as you say- straight forward, searchable and inexpensive.
    Let me ask this- the photos you use for the app, are they kept within the app itself, or is it accessing them from your camera roll/library?

    my camera roll is already out of control, and I don’t know that I would want to have to also keep all those photos as well.
     
  12. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    The photos do not end up in your camera role; therefore, I assume they are embedded in the app-data on your phone (or your personal icloud).

    You can import the photo from your camera role, into the app but again, it looks like it stored a lower res version within the app.

    Keeping track of names, source (events, etc) and linking toys to header cards was the primary reason I thought it would be a good solution to what I was looking for. I am aware you can do it in Excel and I started that way myself but (for me) it isn't seamless, quick or intuitive, specifically the ease of adding a photo; hence, wanting to find an easier solution.
     
  13. Roger

    Roger Prototype

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    My concern about the app maker having my pictures of my toys is seeing them on eBay one day under the title "Bull Mark Monster Thing At That Time."
     
  14. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    As mentioned above photos are stored locally (on your phone) or your personal iCloud, the developer of the app does not have access to any data from the user.

    If you are concerned about "having my pictures of my toys" ripped and put onto eBay, surely that is more likely to happen from public sources such as social media and forums?
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2021
  15. Anti Social Andy

    Anti Social Andy Die-Cast

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    Not while he's wearing his tin foil hat!
     
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  16. Roger

    Roger Prototype

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    YOU'RE ALL AFTER MY LUCKY CHARMS!

    When I search for "collector one" app this thread comes up as the third hit. When he puts out an Android version I'll check it out.
     
  17. treblekicker

    treblekicker Beggars Can't Be Choosers

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    $5? If it helps me get my collection even half organized, it'll be well worth it. I'm going in...
     
  18. EtR_Wolf

    EtR_Wolf Comment King

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    @Mr Fox , can you ask the developer if they're planning to have an android version? I cannot find it in the app store on my phone. Womp womp. Sounds like a fantastic app though and hopefully they'll make an android version soon!
     
  19. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Unfortunately, when I asked this, his response was: "no plans to develop one for Android yet, it could be time expensive."

    I believe he is an independent developer, so I guess it boils down to how much time he has and what helps pay the bills best. Part of the reason for my heads up was because although it is buried beneath a load of bloat-ware and pay-per-use software, thus is not getting any real recognition. Call me a sucker for the small independent business person but I like what he is doing and felt it deserved a bit of recognition.

    If anyone wants to mail him, he can be reached via his website: http://chepenicoli.com/

    Perhaps if enough people let him know they'd support an Android version, he'll take the time to do it. I'm not a coder, so don't know how hard it would be to convert (if at all possible) what he has built in iOS to Android?
     
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  20. EtR_Wolf

    EtR_Wolf Comment King

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    Yeah, that is understandable. I'll email him to express my interest, but I'll understand if he won't ever make an android version. Hopefully he will one day or hopefully someone else will make a similar one for android.

    Thanks again for sharing!
     
  21. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Collector One - Simple Collection Database App
    Before downloading the app, I dropped the developer a message to ask whether there was an export function. At the time he said he was working on it but Collector One didn't currently have that capability.

    This evening he kindly sent me an email saying that he had uploaded the latest version of the app, with CSV export function, to iTunes and was waiting for Apple to approve it, making it live.

    As before, I hope this may help someone out. :thumbsup:
     
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  22. hellopike

    hellopike S7 Royalty

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    I just purchased collection one, and I’m just starting to add items- is there a way to tag entries with multiple (sub)categories? I can make different categories, but it seems like each entry is only allowed to have one sun category. For instance I have a skullwing entry, is there a way to list it as “Secretbase” “Pushead” and “fight figure”?
     
  23. Mr Fox

    Mr Fox Toy Prince

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    Hey Phil, based on my experience of it, the only thing you could do is create a separate collection heading, for instance ‘Secretbase’ and then set up groups within it (Pushead or Fight Figure) but each toy would only be able to be assigned to one group, not multiple as per your question.

    I posted a link to the developers web site above - he is pretty responsive, so would be worth you dropping him an email and asking if he could consider allowing items to be assigned to more than one group, which, as I read it, is what you are looking for.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2021
  24. hellopike

    hellopike S7 Royalty

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    I sent him a message suggesting multiple category fields to allow for cross referencing. We’ll see where it goes. Now to start taking pictures of my collection.
     
  25. Patrickg2k

    Patrickg2k Toy Prince

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    What fields are y'all using to catalog your toys? I'm starting now using an Excel spreadsheet and trying to figure out every possible field I could fill-in. Any suggestions? Here's what I have so far:
    • ID (I'm assigning a unique ID to each item in my collection.)
    • Toy Name (Name of Platform)
    • Version (Name of Specific Release of Platform)
    • Painted By (Who Painted It)
    • Created By (Who Designed or Sculpted It)
    • Produced By (What Factory Pulled It)
    • Release Year
    • Source (Where Was It Purchased)
    • Purchase Price
    • Estimated Value (What's It Selling For)
    • Notes
    I thought about adding a few other fields but I also don't want it to be too bloated. I certainly don't want to miss anything important.
     

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