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Here’s the CLZ News for May 2021, as always brought to you by CLZ Alwin.
Yes, I am still at it, after 25 years! That’s right, this month we are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the first Collectorz.com product: Music Collector for Windows!
Read my full “origin story” below 🙂

A large part of the CLZ team is working on big projects that take long to complete. The new Submit to Core system, the big CLZ Cloud / Connect update for music with lots of new fields and all the new Batch Link screens for Windows.
And we have started on a new huge endeavour: big cosmetic updates for all CLZ mobile apps. We have 4 people working on that, mobile developers Pim and Bernard, UI designer and tester AJ and since last week, even web-developer Sven joined the mobile team to bring you great looking new details screens with this updates to the “Clear” templates.

So… all in all… only 2 actual releases this month. More coming up soon!
The newsletter topics today:

    • Music Collector’s 25th anniversary
    • CLZ Movies 6.4: New look for movie list, cover view & movie details
    • Music Collector 21.1 for Windows: New Link with Core screen


Music Collector’s 25th anniversary

This month we are celebrating the 25th anniversary of Music Collector for Windows, which was the first of the Collectorz.com product, released back in May 1996! Here’s how it all started:

Back in 1996, I needed to learn a new programming language and I needed a demo project to test my skills on. So I decided to create a database program for my own CD collection (around 300 CDs at the time).

After a while, the program turned out quite nicely (if I may say so myself), so in May 1996 I released it as “shareware”, calling it “Keep it Compact”, KiC for short. And a few weeks later, the first person ever purchased my program (thank you, Neil!). In the years following, more and more people purchased it and I kept releasing updates with improvements and new features, all in my spare time.

Up until October 2000. Then I decided to quit my day job and started developing my own software full-time. Keep it Compact was renamed to “Music Collector” and was re-released as the first product of my new company Collectorz.com. The extra time to work on this project soon resulted in the 2nd product called Movie Collector (by that time I had started collecting DVDs myself, so makes sense, right?).

Fast forward to 2021: I now run Collectorz.com together with my wife Sytske and the company has 9 employees (AJ, Martin, Rowdy, Sven, Pim, Joe, Stijn, Joel and Bernard).
We now offer cataloging solutions for music, movies, books, comics and video games, as desktop software, web-based apps and mobile apps. All products are now using our own CLZ Core online media databases and are all connected through our home-grown CLZ Cloud solution.

And, we’re still having loads of fun continuously improving our cataloging tools!

CLZ Movies 6.4: New look for movie list, cover view & movie details

Instead of adding more new features to the CLZ mobile apps, we decided to take a few weeks to work on the look and feel of the apps. Last week, CLZ Movies was the first to received this “cosmetic” update, in its version 6.4.

In the 6.4 update, we improved the look and layout of the movie list and of the movie details pages, in both the main screen and the Add screen preview.
On top of that, we finally acted upon a common request from our users: you can now change the size of the thumbnails in the Images View!

New look for the movie list

  • Improved size, layout and font size of list entries
  • A subtle movie backdrop is now shown behind the list
    (this is optional, switch it off using Settings)
  • Tablet: backdrop is now full screen, continuing behind folder list, movie list and details

Images View: you can now change thumbnail size

This was a common request for the Images View: “Can I make the thumbnails bigger? (or smaller)”. So we finally made this happen. A new slider is now present at the top, that lets you choose how many covers are shown per row.

Movie details (“Clear” template)

A complete redesign of the Clear template, in both Light and Dark mode, with a better layout of all movie details. Plus, you can now easily change Collection Status, Seen It and Rating by tapping their blue display blocks, right from the details page.

Add Movie screen, Preview page

Same here, a complete redesign of the Preview template, to better show the movie details from Core. And, you can now tap the small cover thumbnail to show a full screen cover.

Lots of CLZ Movies 6.4 screenshots: for iOS / for Android.

Similar updates are coming up for the other 4 CLZ apps in the upcoming weeks. CLZ Comics is up next week already!

Music Collector 21.1 for Windows: New Link with Core screen

After Movie, Book and Game Collector, it is time for Music Collector to receive the new Batch Link with Core screen.

The new screen was created from scratch and offers a more visual and easier-to-use linking process, allowing you to quick link many discs in one go. Open the new Batch Link screen by choosing Batch Link Discs from the new CLZ Core menu.

When you open the screen, it automatically shows a list of all your unlinked discs. Click Find Matches at the top left to automatically find the best matches in our Core online music database, based on barcode, artist and title.

This process will auto-link discs based on barcode where possible. For the rest of your unlinked discs it determines a “match score”. Use the big green Link button at the bottom right to accept the all “high match scores” and link them all in one go, saving you loads and loads of time and clicks!

Finally, for the remaining low scores, go through and click the Accept button to accept the suggested match, or use the Link Manually button to find a matching disc manually.

Need to renew your Music Collector subscription? Just login to the CLZ Shop here.

Enjoy and stay safe!