Rare Book Monthly

Articles - March - 2004 Issue

FootNotes: For the Next Generation of Online Book Listings

Footnote1

What does this FootNote look like? Here’s a sample for the book History of the War between the United States and the Sac and Fox Nations.


By Bruce McKinney

The world of books, once the staid backwater of the information age, is moving along at a quick pace these days, thank you. Books, until recently the solid and predictable bricks of the increasingly elaborate intellectual construction we call education, are showing themselves to be as able to be redefined by changing electronic capabilities as just about everyone from Gutenberg to God would want, and to adapt very well. Can we tell you where we’ll be in fifty years? No, but neither can you, and the world of books is headed off on a trip that will make Alice’s jaunt down the rabbit hole look positively tame. If you are looking for a new frontier, look no further. Books, or at least what’s in them, are going to be on the cutting edge for sometime to come. It seems like every five hundred years or so, ready or not, books redefine things all over again.

15 Day Free Trial: Would you like a no-obligation free trial of MatchMaker/FootNotes? Click here to submit your request. We’ll provide you with a free account by return email within 24 hours. Then simply sign in and try these capabilities yourself. It’s fun and it’s interesting.

This month AE takes another step in the evolution/revolution of the printed word. The challenge is the integration of book history into the listings of books for sale. Why not? It’s not only possible. It’s actually easy and makes books and ephemera 3-D, adding auction, dealer and bibliographical records to books offered for sale. The fact is that online book listings today are barely different from the dealer catalogue descriptions. For about ten years now, since book listings on the net began to take hold, they have simply mimicked traditional presentations. That can change and now will.

Enter FootNotes - software that combines the online book listing with the history of the title. It works this way. Any seller who is a Matchmaker member, $17.50 a month, can create up to 500 files of up to 50 footnotes each that can be attached to selling listings with a single AE FootNotes file link. This link opens a pop-up window on the seller’s site that contains bibliographical and sales history. It says “I’ll empower you. I think the book is worth X and if you agree buy it.” In time most, if not all books will be explained this way. New books will have links to price comparisons and reviews and old books will have links to articles, bibliographies and priced records. The days of “I say it is worth this much” will be replaced by “the market says it is worth this much.” And as this happens the world of old and rare books will enter a new and much better chapter. Sales and values will increase. The value of rare books, restrained by lack of easily accessible market information, will increase as buyers, able to understand the book market clearly, will be attracted by transparency. Simply stated: ignorance impairs and knowledge empowers.

Here is how FootNotes works. First find the title you would like to footnote in the AE Database. Select those records from the database you would like included in your FootNote. Once finished, you can review your new FootNote page. If you are satisfied, simply copy the link (url) that appears on that page and paste it as a link with the book’s description on your site. That’s all. When a visitor to your site, reading your description, clicks this link, a window pops up on their screen containing all of the listings, plus any other information you add to your FootNote file.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Newton. <i>Philosophiae naturalis principia mathematica</i>. London, 1687.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Josephus. <i>De antiquitate Judaica.</i> Lubeck, 1475-76.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Carlerius. <i>Sporta fragmentorum, Sportula fragmentorum</i>. Brussels, 1478-79.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Fridolin. <i>Der Schatzbehalter</i>. Nuremberg, 1491.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Pinder. <i>Der beschlossen gart des rosenkrantz marie</i>. Nuremberg, 1505.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Isidorus Hispalensis. <i>Synonyma de Homine</i>. Nuremberg, 1470-71.
    <b>Bonhams, inviting consignments for Sep 27:</b> Durer. Sammelband including <i>Underweysung der messing</i>. Nuremberg, 1525-29.
  • <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
    <b>TO AKABA! T.E. Lawrence and the Arab Revolt. Books, manuscripts and pictures. On exhibition 16 to 24th July at Maggs' new premises 48 Bedford Square.</b>
  • <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Exodus 10:10 to 16:15. Complete Biblical scroll sheet in Hebrew, a Torah scroll panel. Middle East, ca. 10th or 11th century.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Copernicus Refuted. (Astronomy.). Scientific manuscript of a course of studies at Collège de la Trinité, Lyon. 1660s.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Israel’s War of Independence and the Early Days of the IDF. 58 photographs presented to Israel Ber, IDF officer and later convicted spy.
    <b>19th Century Shop’s Catalog 170 Great Books and Photos. Please inquire for a copy.</b>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Early Unpublished Darwin letter on the races of man. Autograph Letter Signed [to Henry Denny]. Down, Kent, June 1, [1844].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Classic Image of American Slavery. Kimball, M. H. <i>Emancipated Slaves</i>. New York: George Hanks, 1863.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> (Underground Railroad.) Scaggs, Isaac. Important Runaway Slave Poster: $500 Reward Ran away, or decoyed from the subscriber…
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>Keep Calm and Carry On</i>, designer unknown, 1939. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen, <i>Le Journal / La Traite des Blanches</i>, 1899. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>"Let Us Go Forward Together,"</i> designer unknown, 1940. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, <i>Babylone d'Allemagne</i>, 1894. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Frank Beatty, <i>Out of the Running</i>, 1929. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> James Montgomery Flagg, <i>Wake Up America Day</i>, 1917. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> <i>Danté / Sim • Sala • Bim!</i>, designer unknown. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Alphonse Mucha, <i>[Zodiac]</i>, 1900. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Rick Griffin, <i>Jimi Hendrix Experience / John Mayall</i>, 1968. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2: Vintage Posters</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Abram Games, <i>Join the ATS</i>, 1941. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Aldo Mazza, <i>Torino / Esposizione Internazionale</i>, 1911. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 2:</b> Robert Motherwell, <i>Julliard School / Dedication - Lincoln Center</i>, 1969. $3,000 to $4,000

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