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Monday, October 19, 2009

Tuesday Thinger: Spotlight on LT Technology - the CueCat

Welcome to another week of Tuesday Thingers! We always love to hear from regular participants as well as new people.

This week, we are going to take a peek into the LT CueCat. No sales pitches here - I'm really curious to see if anyone is using one!

What is a CueCat?? I'm glad you asked! According to Library Thing:

The CueCat scanner is a cheap but effective barcode scanner that plugs into your computer's USB port. LibraryThing reads data from unmodified CueCats. They cost $15 each.

Help! How do I use my CueCat?
CueCats ship with a short instruction sheet, and you can find more information in the FAQ.
LibraryThing user GreyHead has also written a very helpful guide.
There are also numerous sites that explain how to "declaw" the CueCat, for use with other scanning applications. For more about this, and about the wacky history of the CueCat, see Wikipedia.

We know it works with Win ME, XP, Vista and Mac OS X. We're not sure about other versions of Windows, although they were developed when 98 was the dominant version of Windows.

Other uses I found online for the CueCat (some of these are q&a type sites, so I scrolled down to see some suggestions):
~ Scan your wine collection
~ Cataloguing books, cd's, dvds
~ Creating a shopping list as you run out of grocery items (simply scan them)

I don't think LT is the only place you can get a CueCat ~ I was able to find a bunch of them on Ebay starting around $7.00ish including shipping.

Questions: Do you have a CueCat? Have you thought of getting one? If you had it, would you explore the other uses such as creating a shopping list? Can you think of any helpful uses for the CueCat other than scanning your books into LT? Any questions or suggestions for next week?

My Answer: I don't have one yet. I have thought about getting one as I want to get better (quicker) at uploading my books into Library Thing.

I'd LOVE to use it to catalog our dvd collection! We've got a ton of dvd's and don't even know what we have. . . hmmmm - I could keep track of who has borrowed what. . . this could come in handy. :)

Now that I think of it, I would probably use it to scan books and dvd's into PaperbackSwap and SwapaDVD as they are ISBN/UPC driven.

As far as some of the creative uses I found online while I was researching for this post, I would have to say I also LOVE the idea of creating a shopping list by scanning items as they are used (train the hubby to scan the milk container when it gets low).

Looking forward to reading everyone's answers!!

~ Wendi

If you are new to Tuesday Thingers: Welcome! The meme was originally created as a way to network with other bloggers and to learn about Library Thing! I'd like to encourage you to join us. If you don't know what Library Thing is - you are in a great place to learn about new things, and if you are an old pro, stick around and share your wealth of information! Visit Library Thing here. To join in, copy the picture and question into your post and link back here so people can read other responses. Make sure you leave a comment here with a link to your post so we can stop by! If you don't have a blog, feel free to leave a comment here!


Anonymous said...

Great topic!
Mine's HERE

Katy said...

I've been seriously considering buying a cue cat to help me catalog my books easier. My books are starting to be stashed all over the house and I have not been good about updating my LT. :\ Cue Cat looks helpful, and I may cave in and buy one sometime soon.

Alice said...

I've been considering getting one for the longest time. I'm glad you did this post and it sort of reminded me again.

Unknown said...

I haven't, but I'm tempted. I think I'd first have to go for a paid account though.

Booklogged said...

I don't have one, but it sure does sound helpful. Thanks for this informative post, Wendy.

Kathy W said...

I thought about getting one of the cue cats. My vision is really bad at times and I have a hard time reading those ISBN#. I would like to actually hear from someone who has Vista on thier computers and has a cue cat first though.

bermudaonion said...

I love gadgets, so I'd love a cue cat, but I just can't justify spending the money on one.

Margot said...

I'm glad you raised this topic this week as I, too, have been thinking about getting one of these to help with my book cataloguing. But to make a grocery list - wow!

caite said...

I don't have one and all my books are now entered on LT...but if I can use it on CDs...hmmmmm...well, I muse on that in MY POST>

Lenore Appelhans said...

My post:


I think I forgot to post a link last week --- sorry!!

ccqdesigns said...

Well, since this came up I started reading about it, I had never heard of them before. And, you have declaw the thing (take it apart and cut a line in one of the circuits) and there may be some program compatability issues depending on how you are trying to use it. I found it for $12 at http://www.mavin.com/index.php?search[terms]=cuecat&search[mode]=any
Who bought the balance of the stock when the company went out of business. I would love to hear from someone that has one, has used it, and it is working. If it was easily compatible with excel spreadsheets, I would love to use it for data downloads that would give me a list of my books with title, author, ISBN. This I could then use to download into any other program I wanted. I could also use excel for the shopping list, dvd inventory or any other type inventory. BUT, it is not supported by any software as of now, if it breaks, oh well. Sounds like a techy toy that will come and go quickly to me. Anybody else?

caite said...

double posting because in the comments on my post is finally an opinion from someone who has actually used the Cuecat!

Margaret Metz said...

I have a Cue Cat and use it to enter books into a database called Readerware. It works wonderfully and I haven't had any problems with it. I bought mine off e-bay. I use XP - not Vista.

Anonymous said...

I don't have a Cuecat although I think it would be neat to have since I have an abundance of books. I kinda like it..as it's in the shape of a cat I love kitties :)

Enid Wilson said...

Oh, I'm so bad in technology. Never heard of it. But I wonder why readers need this? For better inventory of books?

Bargain with the Devil

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