My earliest recollection of trips to the video store usually ended with drumming my fingers. I did that while the guy behind the counter filled out the pink index card with the borrower’s details. Why couldn’t he be quicker about it? My frets didn’t speed him up. But any of today’s open source movie organizer or collection managers could have.
I don’t know if the guy behind the counter has updated his system, but I certainly have. I used to be a disgrace to the fraternity of digital packrats. Not anymore, because I have tidied up my act. From movies to songs, you ask it”¦I can bring up all the information you might need with a click. Thanks to a bevy of collection managers I have tried out.
Ant Movie Catalog is the latest open source movie organizer that I am sieving my movie collection through. And I have been pleasantly surprised by the efficiency of this Open Source software. Ant Movie Catalog is a free open source movie organizer that you can download and install or download, unpack and run without an install. I opted for the later. The download size is a tiny 3.5MB.
When you take the first look at the screen, you might feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of fields that need to be filled out. For a true movie lover, that’s candy for the eyes because all he wants are details and details about his favorite movies. But for him also, it would be a migraine inducer if he had to fill it all up by himself. But then why should you when the web can do it automatically for you.
Here’s how I did it for the first bunch of film titles I put into the collection.
In 3 clicks, get all the information on your movie
Ant Movie Catalog not only goes into a lot of details for a movie but it makes it easy to get all that from a host of film databases. To fill out all the fields for a movie, you need to just click on Movie – Add”¦Put in the name in the Original Title field box and then either click on the Get Information toolbar icon or go via the menu (Movie – Get Information – From internet using a script).
The scripts are where all the riches of Ant Movie Catalog lie. You have about 238 scripts at last count. You can try any one of them. These scripts are nothing but codes that help the software get specific information from online movie websites and online DVD stores. Familiar biggies like Amazon and IMDB are there of course.
Run the any of the scripts; for similar named titles. Select yours and let Ant Movie Catalog collect all the values for the fields. You can customize which fields to include in your database.
You can add a bunch of titles in one go and complete your collection with a few clicks. Ant Movie Catalog also facilitates import of movie titles from other file formats.
Ant Movie Catalog also connects any movie to online movie info sites like – IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes, DVD Empire and DVDZone2. You can add more sites from Preferences.
So many ways to visualize all that information
Ant Movie Catalog is an information hound’s delight. There are many ways to order, categorize and display all the movie information collected in the database.
You can group movies by any of the field values. For instance, group it by borrower to see which of your friend has begged, borrowed or stolen which title. Or by Media Type to give you an idea of the format you have used to archive the movie.
For the guy who has an eye for pie charts and bar graphs, the Statistics feature is an information mine.
Ant Movie Catalog has an added Loan Management feature. Using it, you can manage the movies that your friends have borrowed from you. You can add borrower names and keep tabs by checking in and checking out the titles that you lend out.
The feature that I use most often is the Export to another file format. You can use any of the six available formats to send out a detailed list of your movies. For instance, I use the HTML format to send out the titles I have to my friends.
And of course, you can print out your entire movie list with lots of customized templates to choose from.
Ant Movie Catalog may lack the glamour but it catches the grammar of an efficient and comprehensive collection manager. Some extra bits like a feature to track movies by how many times we watch it would have helped.
But it squeezes in all the information it can find and presents it straight. For the sake of having all the movies info at your fingertips, that’s all you want in the end.
Ant Movie Catalog version 188.8.131.52 is compatible with all Windows versions up to Win XP. The site says that – the compatibility with Windows Vista and 7 is not perfect, but that does not prevent the program from running normally.
Do you use any open source movie organizers? Which is the one for you?