Notes About Reading Tracking

Roel M. Hogervorst


Categories: blog Tags: books quantified-self inspiration

a library shelf full of brown books with a ladder in front of it

I’ve never really tracked what I read. Not seriously anyways. I once had goodreads account (in 2014!), but goodreads became enslaved by Amazon and so we shouldn’t touch it anymore.

But this year I’m giving tracking a serious go.

I’ve added two new columns to calibre: ‘started reading’ ‘stopped reading’ so I can keep track in my own system. I’m also keeping track on a bookwyrm instance called rambling-readers.

Bookwyrm uses the activitypub system so people all acros the fediverse can interact with bookwyrm users. This is an interesting idea and I love the idea of book communities.

There have been other ideas about sharing your library of books, and your reading progress with others. I like Tom Critchlow’s wiki of books He even proposed a library.json format for books

His idea was to inspire each other by displaying what you’re reading:

Would love to see a “web of books” emerge from the web rather than via fixing goodreads –tomcritchlow (sep 7, 2019)

But there is already a spec (Open Publication Distribution System)

OOh it seems there are plugins for calibre to transform your library into a opds format. There is a better one too: COPS (Calibre OPDS (and HTML) PHP Server)

So I’m tracking my reading in two places and sharing it online too. I love the simple goal I set at the start of the year: read 20 books.

Tracking just for tracking is a stupid idea, see my earlier post “collecting just for the sake of collecting”. it should make sense, there should be a motivation to track information. In this case, I want to read back what I read in this year and want to see how many books I can read. And to motivate me to read books in stead of scrolling through my phone.

Anyway what I want most, I think, is to organize my digital library and make it easy to search through all my books.

Good thing I checked my goodreads account, it was still active! at least they allow me to download a copy of the data and I removed the account.

_image from Henry Be: the Library of Trinity College (Ireland)