AE - Turning over a new leaf
- by Bruce E. McKinney
The Americana Exchange website you see today is the 5th iteration in the company’s 11 year history. The look is refreshed and the databases enlarged to handle the ever-increasing volume of records. In mid August the AED reached five million full text records. Over the next two years we’ll reach six and move on to seven. While the site is different it is also very similar. Here is an update.
The home page looks familiar but the images are larger and automatically reorient the nearby text to accommodate more images if and as needed. These flickering ads incorporate up to 20 images and each link to specific material on advertiser websites. Note that clicking an image opens another page in your browser rather than a pop-up window. This presents the linked material in a larger format.
The small auction calendar on the home page now includes the number of sales posted on specific dates. We sometimes have a dozen or more sales. Clicking on specific dates brings up all sales that day. The sale numbers are links to the auction details. Clicking on the month opens a larger format calendar.
On this version the names of sales are links to event details and all lots posted. To exit this and other pages on the new site use the back button or alternatively shift between page views as displayed in your browser window. To have multiple windows open and visible side by side pull one page away to open a second bowser.
Log-in ID and Password functions are the same and your current log-in ID and password work on the new site just as they did on the old. The Log-in link is always in the upper right hand corner. When first signing in select "Remember Me" to automatically sign-in.
Members can use their accounts from diverse locations and in a number of formats. The iPad works very well, phones not so much because the full page is crunched into the available space. If you are using your account at work but leave the account open when you depart, when you then log-in from home the new log-in will knock off the old. In this way you’ll always have access. Sharing access, which is prohibited in many circumstances, will be difficult to do as someone logging into your account will automatically end your session. Firms that need multiple connections can obtain them.
Databases. The default database for signed-in members is the AED, for free members Upcoming Auctions. Searches, as before can be done in keyword and advanced formats. The outcome of your search will show the number of records in the database you searched and also show the number of records found in our other databases [AED, Books for Sale and Upcoming Auctions]. The headers reorganize the results. For records selected in the AED there is an option to Get Current Estimate that grades the records by age, adds and averages their individual current adjusted values, to obtain an average current valuation.
For searches that need to be further refined the advanced search link in the upper right corner retains the current search terms. To start over select reset. To close the advance search box click the link once. To reopen it click on it again.
Matchmaker. Matchmaker works for members with a free or research account. New matches for Live Auctions and Books for Sale are identified every day. EBay matches are more complex and require an Octavo or Folio membership. A preferences link controls what and how you search and how you learn about new matches.
AE Monthly. This publication is very similar. Each issues includes three sections; articles, reviews and e-Catalogues. Links at the top of articles permit you to print, email to a friend, change font size and share a link. At the bottom of every page of articles are opportunities to comment for those who are signed in.
On the right side, at the top, are links to articles, reviews, e-catalogues and Letters to the Editor. Under Article/Review Search you can select articles or reviews, enter a term or terms, and then Search. On the right side, further down, are links to back issues – all the way back to September 2002.
We will continue to tweak the site. If you have comments or suggestions there’s a link on the lower right side of most pages: Ask Questions. On the form provided you there are four choices:
I have a problem.
I have a question.
Can you help me with my research?
I have a suggestion
We will try to respond quickly.