Armed with my kid-friendly Nook library, I’ve loaded the Nook app on my iPhone again, so I can read my own books.
The screen may be small, but it’s somewhat readable until my vision goes. And it’s searchable, much like the Nook app.
What’s the deal with NOOK for the web?
What drives me crazy about NOOK for the web is that it’s not searchable. The books show up, in “recent” order (by date of purchase, newest to oldest), 12 to a page. With 300+ books in my library, it’s quite a number of pages.
So to find a book, I have to play “guess”. If I know the book, what page is it likely to be on in recent order? Okay, resort by title name, 60 entries to the page. Wait for it to refresh. Hit Ctrl + F and search on the title. Nope. Page 2, repeat. Page 3, repeat. Or resort by author name.
Or scroll scroll scroll, looking for something to read.
It’s not that fun.
What about the great archiving effort I went through the other day? Every time I clicked the Archive link online, I had to wait for the page to redraw itself. And sometimes it would reset to 12 items per page in recent order. Difficult and annoying.
How can they fix NOOK for the web?
We have to sign in to view our library, so I’d start by suggesting they allow users to set preferences. I prefer 60 items per page; sorting by author (last) name. Allow me to set those preferences, and keep them.
Have “recent” mean more than what you just purchased. Alternatively, rename it “sort by newest purchase” and add “recently read” as an option, too.
Sorting by author name is okay in a web page that has precious little ability to do anything. There’s no option to sort by first name, or to turn up a secondary or tertiary author. Nor is there a reverse sort (Z-A). Those are simple niceties to add; the information is there, after all.
Honestly, searching is the thing I miss the most when moving from Nook or Nook app to the web.
Getting around the lack of search on NOOK for web.
Another broken item is using the web page to search the Nook available books. If a user searches the bn.com web site for a specific Nook book, they can find it. Yay. But it never tells the user that they already own it (assume the user is logged in). It’s not until they click the purchase link are they told that they own it.
Is it hard to start reading it right away? Amazon (sometimes) manages it.
The Nook stuff is just a bolt-on.
The lack of integration, after all this time, is really starting to annoy me. I bought a first generation Nook and books with the express purpose of supporting an alternative publishing garden to Amazon and iTunes.
If Nook wants to move into a more flexible sphere instead of simply raking in money for renting text books, the integration needs to be much tighter with the web page. The underlying architecture of the two systems (NOOK for the web and bn.com) have to work with each other, and the users need to have more control over their environment.
Make Library management a priority.
In addition to user preference options and searchability, the library management is pretty limited. You can archive something (hide it from your library ecosystem temporarily), you can delete items (I thought it was sci fi, not sci fi soft core porn), and you and unarchive items.
And you can do it one item at a time. Only.
Add in a check box option next to each book. Allow the books to be selected, and have an action apply to all of those books, such as archive and unarchive.
Adding check boxes and bulk actions should not be a huge change, and it allows us people who were dumb enough to buy books to “share” and not share within the family a lot less hassle in setting up person-specific friendly libraries.