Bug fixes and small features for BookMooch

October 4, 2007

I’ve put a new version of BookMooch up, that fixes a few bugs caused by the new version 2 days ago and adds a few small features.

This new version:

* fixes the amazon search bug (any search inside BookMooch to Amazon, for more than one word, would find no results)

* you couldn’t change your photo, the photo change page was broken

* OCLC related editions were causing the wishlist-related page was painfully slow. This was a caching bug on my part, and has been fixed.

* further fixes to Japanese version of BM interface (my trying to make Japanese work is what caused the Amazon search problem, fyi). Now, searching consistently works. However, I uncovered a subtle bug: sometimes a book is indexed by its actual Japanese characters, and sometimes it is indexed using HTML entity equivalents, such as &#43232. The web browser displays them the same way, but my indexing program see two different words, so I need to add logic to consolidate the search results, or else make the indexer aware of this and index words only one way.

On that topic, I’m still looking for someone to help me and translate the 20 phrases from the BookMooch home page into Japanese.

And some small changes:

* a “tell-a-friend” feature in the “about” menu

* inventory now shows books that you need to send. Previously, a book that was in your pending pile was not show in your inventory. This confused some people, and they would re-add the same book, and it would get mooched again. Books that you need to send have a “TO SEND” button next to them, since you can’t remove it from your inventory once someone has asked to mooch it. Click on TO SEND and you’ll go to your pending page.


* added “languages” to “browse” page, so can jump right to them. A comment on the blog recently asked me to add a feature to browse books by the language they’re written in. The person didn’t know this was currently available, because they didn’t know to look in the “locations” menu. I realized that putting “languages” inside “locations” didn’t make a lot of sense, so I moved it out of there, onto the browse menu. While I was at it, I decided to get rid of the underlined-linked text on the browse page, as it’s an inconsistent design from the rest of the site, and made the browse page use the normal buttons look.

Here is how the old browse page looks:

Browse Old

and the new one:

Browse New

it does take a bit more space. The confusing aspect of this browse page is caused by combining two search forms, which grab the eye, with a menu of buttons, which also want to grab the eye. I need to find a better solution.

6 Responses to “Bug fixes and small features for BookMooch”

  1. Ben said

    I might be able to help with the Japanese translation. How much text do you need translated?

  2. Well, what you have works pretty nicely. I’ve been really happy with the interface, overall. The following are just suggestions if changes are not impossible to execute.

    I don’t fully follow the logic of having “Search” and “Browse” on the same page. Also, on the Browse page, you have two boxes which appear to do the same thing. You have a Search box at top (where it is on every page) with a Search button to the right of it, and a Search box below with a “Search Bookmooch” button to the right of it, and both appear to do the same thing. I would keep the top one and have a smaller Advanced Search button or link beneath it. That leaves the Search Amazon button below. You could put that button above, too, using one textbox for both kinds of searches. If you did that, then all kinds of searches would be available on all pages, and the area below would be for browsing alone. With the extra room on the browse page, you could group buttons similar in function a little more.

    You may have considered some of these ideas before and not followed them. But I’m guessing that perhaps some of those decisions were made before you had as much functionality on each page.

  3. Dottie said

    still having difficulty changing picture:(

  4. Rik Scott said

    ZoneAlarm Forcefeild makes no bones declaring this site a “phishing” site.
    Not very good press I’m afraid.
    Just letting you know,I am not sure how the code yeilds this decision.

  5. April said

    Hi, I’ve noticed what may be a small bug, and I don’t know where to report it.

    When someone searches for member name “April” (which is my name), it only shows an April in USA-IL, not me, April in USA-VA. Is this something I can control, or maybe a bug ?

  6. Hope said

    What about mirroring the layout of the wishlist where the text (or in that case, book links,) is on the left, and the buttons on the right? At least then the eye is following two columns – text on the left, buttons on the right.

    It’s almost beginning to feel like there are enough BookMooch Tools/functions to be worth having a Tools page. After all there is bulk import for the inventory, bulk add to inventory, bulk wishlist imports, the moochbar, remove all books, charity, advanced search, the widgets, vacation your account. Sorry – I suppose I’ve got used to the LibraryThing Tools page! šŸ™‚

    Just my tuppence!

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