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Do you use an online collection database?


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I'm trying to get my collection photographed and organized properly. I would like to have a resource where I can go to see and search my collection online. I know there's galleries like on Forvm Ancient Coins and I know of Colleconline. I'm just wondering if anyone else uses something similar and what you use. Thanks! 

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Excel and Word are not suitable for this use, and very quickly limited when you want something a little elaborate. A database, because that's what it is, is done with Access. It is certainly much longer and more complicated to implement, but the result is infinitely better. Better visually, and above all better for the ease of reaching each coin of the database.
Below, an example of what we can have for each coin (among other possibilities, very numerous).

image.png.580028d682f67a7e24de0a88c71e032a.png

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2 minutes ago, Alwin said:

Excel and Word are not suitable for this use, and very quickly limited when you want something a little elaborate. A database, because that's what it is, is done with Access. It is certainly much longer and more complicated to implement, but the result is infinitely better. Better visually, and above all better for the ease of reaching each coin of the database.
Below, an example of what we can have for each coin (among other possibilities, very numerous).

image.png.580028d682f67a7e24de0a88c71e032a.png

But he look and ask for an Online Database.

And Colleconline you have the same like a lokal access database. You can save all data like prices, dates, you can upload your invoices, Dokuments, Zertifikates … you can create your own fields. And it’s free from any operating system. If you make an access database over years and switch - for example - from windows to Mac - there is a problem, because there’s no access Mac version. Colleconline you can use on any system… also at Smartphone and Tablet. 

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Sorry, I hadn't really integrated the "online". I understand all the possibilities you mention. But I also see the downsides. The question is: do you prefer to be the only one to manage your personal data or are you ready to let them wander outside?

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7 hours ago, Alwin said:

The question is: do you prefer to be the only one to manage your personal data or are you ready to let them wander outside?

Or you can make an own Website - like a WordPress Blog or so. You can present your coins online - and have the data at your side...

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I use Colleconline too, and so far am satisfied with it. Prior to that I had my collection displayed at Forvm (most of it is still there though). The main advantage I see at Colleconline is you can change your picture without rewriting the whole file, or post up to five pictures for the same coin/artifact

Q

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There are a lot of great tools out there for storing collections online but the problem I had with them is that the functionality is often very limited. Since you're digitising your collection, it'd make sense to be able to take advantage of that data and use it in different ways, such as: using it to plot your coins on a map, aggregating weights/diameters by different denominations or weight standards, analysing your purchases to see the effects of changing exchange rates or different fees/shipping costs between auction houses add up in the long-run etc, plotting your collecting habits over time, calculating your profit/loss on coins you've bought and then consigned etc.

So for this reason, I did two things: (1) use Google Sheets to track this info and run any analysis I like on the data, and (2) start a website so I could do more complex things and have a way to visualise and share my collection. I disagree strongly with @Alwin when he says "Excel and Word are not suitable for this use" as Excel is perfectly suitable (though I'd recommend Google Sheets instead myself). Microsoft Access of course has some benefits but so does Excel/Sheets and if you're good at spreadsheet tools you can easily create a UI for data entry, enforce database conditions like unique keys, make a "lookup" page for displaying a coin and its info in a nice way, etc and leverage all the spreadsheet functions like historical foreign exchange rates for converting prices to a base currency etc. Google Sheets also has the added benefit of having a version history so you can easily revert to a prior state if you screwed something up.

Though there may come a point where using a proper database is needed, and I'm not saying those cases do not exist, only that the vast majority of people would likely not see much benefit from them. In my case, the problem was keeping the data in my website's database up to date with the data in Google Spreadsheet. So just recently, over this past 2 weeks, I decided to switch to using my website's database as my primary database and to build a UI from scratch so that I can interact with the database more easily:943047423_ScreenShot2022-08-19at13_13_20.png.413f2d22998ed39fa6a696ff98aecd46.png

 

But this is something that mainly makes sense for someone who has a website like myself because my website's database is the one used by many of my plugins, such as the Ultra Zoom, the coin galleries, the coin map, and my ANS-like user-facing database with filters etc. So having my Google Sheets out of sync with my website would mean my website doesn't have all the information until I sync the two and I'd essentially be managing two separate datasets. The syncing of Google Sheets to my website is a bit of a manual process where it is easy for things to go wrong as well, so it made sense to stick with one primary database linked to my website, the problem was just that there's no good UI for that database and PHP MyAdmin is not a fun way to manage such a database.

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The problem with this topic (as we already see above) is that each person has a different set of needs.  As such many solutions will have aspects some find invaluable and others will find useless.  Explore the options and find what works best for you (though in all likelihood none will be perfect).

For me my needs are simple.  I just want a simple record with the info. that I want.  As such I simply use a Word document.  I know, it isnt easily searched and one cant readily compare data (which I have no need for anyway).  I am just keeping a running tab, add in new entries when needed and in the place needed.  The outcome is kind of like an old fashioned auction catalog or sales booklet.  When the day comes and I sell out I will have it printed and hard bound so I can take it out and reminisce.  This works perfectly for me but will be useless for others.   

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 7.40.01 AM.png

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I'm an Access user...  I tried the an online database or two, but they didn't really do what I wanted so I went back to my database.  Its not a bad option if you don't mind learning a database program.

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Everyone has different needs so my method may not work for everyone… but I keep it simple and just use Gmail. 

For each coin I just compose an email containing all information about the coin, it’s purchase, reference information and examples of like coins found online… and email it to myself. Using email, my collection is searchable, I can add anything I want from pictures to tables, and I can access it anywhere. The drawback is that my information is not available for people to view online, although I could share coins via-email if needed.

Anyway, it’s a simple and flexible solution with no software needed. Works for me… however since I’m the only one with access to the email account, if I am abducted by aliens or hit by a bus… that information is likely not available to anyone at this time. I’ll have to share the account details with the wife!

Edited by Orange Julius
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I don't use an online database, but my setting is closely related and it could be easily uploaded and used independently as a website, as it's written in html.

This is the main stem:

html.jpg.116daf42ee08ff8125f420eba311a7ad.jpg

 

and this is a further look at the branching out into the 'Crusader...' section:

html1.jpg.17052a1ed428b61b1476e53ed1c9bf90.jpg

and this is how an individual entry on the branch looks like on Feudal France > County of La Marche (as an example):

html2.jpg.3c8e347bd5b1215e9d231455e6e562a8.jpg

Edited by seth77
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3 hours ago, KenDorney said:

The problem with this topic (as we already see above) is that each person has a different set of needs.  As such many solutions will have aspects some find invaluable and others will find useless.  Explore the options and find what works best for you (though in all likelihood none will be perfect).

For me my needs are simple.  I just want a simple record with the info. that I want.  As such I simply use a Word document.  I know, it isnt easily searched and one cant readily compare data (which I have no need for anyway).  I am just keeping a running tab, add in new entries when needed and in the place needed.  The outcome is kind of like an old fashioned auction catalog or sales booklet.  When the day comes and I sell out I will have it printed and hard bound so I can take it out and reminisce.  This works perfectly for me but will be useless for others.   

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 7.40.01 AM.png

Side note but that's a great Alexander tetradrachm. I love how the sceptre extends so much higher than the dotted border, I don't think I've seen it go that high before. Particularly interesting they'd make it so when it doesn't look like it would fit on the flan if struck perfectly centered. Also interesting that it isn't topped with a lotus flower, which usually a lot of the ones that do extend past the border have.

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5 hours ago, KenDorney said:

The problem with this topic (as we already see above) is that each person has a different set of needs.  As such many solutions will have aspects some find invaluable and others will find useless.  Explore the options and find what works best for you (though in all likelihood none will be perfect).

For me my needs are simple.  I just want a simple record with the info. that I want.  As such I simply use a Word document.  I know, it isnt easily searched and one cant readily compare data (which I have no need for anyway).  I am just keeping a running tab, add in new entries when needed and in the place needed.  The outcome is kind of like an old fashioned auction catalog or sales booklet.  When the day comes and I sell out I will have it printed and hard bound so I can take it out and reminisce.  This works perfectly for me but will be useless for others.   

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 7.40.01 AM.png

This is the way i do it too. Work fine for me but i would like to try some other ways like suggested in this thread. 
 

Thats a great Alexander btw! 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Kaleun96 said:

Side note but that's a great Alexander tetradrachm. I love how the sceptre extends so much higher than the dotted border, I don't think I've seen it go that high before. Particularly interesting they'd make it so when it doesn't look like it would fit on the flan if struck perfectly centered. Also interesting that it isn't topped with a lotus flower, which usually a lot of the ones that do extend past the border have.

That is one reason why I bought it (along with it being from (about) the year he died and in the same city).  I've often wondered why such dies were made when in most likelihood that element would not make it onto the coin.  I think it also illustrates that some dies were much larger than the planchets they were struck on. 

Edited by KenDorney
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