What's new in Music Connect?
Here’s the latest results from our endeavour to improve the UI/UX of all Connect features and screens. Today, we made further improvements to both the “Manage Collections” tools and the new Edit Multiple tool.
The Edit Multiple feature is an efficient tool for making changes to multiple (or all) of your database entries in one go. It has been part of the Connect web-based software for many years (since May 2015!). For the CLZ mobile apps, this “batch editing” ability was introduced much later, in July 2020.
However, when we did that, we were forced to completely re-design the feature’s user interface, to make it work well on the small phone screen. And a strange thing happened: the UI/UX we ended up with, turned out be much better than the original Edit Multiple design of the Connect web-based software and the Collector desktop software 🙂
So today, we are bringing that new Edit Multiple setup to the Connect web-based software!
This update is all about the Pre-fill screen, you know, the screen that appears when adding items and lets you pre-fill fields while adding, like Location (= Storage Box for comics), Owner, Purchase Date/Store/Price, etc…
This Pre-fill screen was introduced in Dec 2020, with a fixed set of fields. Then a year later, in March 2022, it was made completely user configurable, so that *you* could choose which fields appeared on the screen.
This screen turned out to be a popular tool, but we’ve seen one problem with it:
Sometimes, users pre-fill a field for a specific movie (e.g. Purchase Price or Quantity), then forget to CLEAR it for the next items they add. Causing lots of items to be added with that same field set incorrectly.
So today, we are making another tweak to the Pre-fill screen:
The Link with Core screen is a tool in the CLZ Cloud site and the Connect web-based software that is used to link entries with CLZ Core. E.g. items that you added manually, or items that you imported. The Link with Core tool is mostly used by users coming from other software and are switching to CLZ.
Today’s update is a “behind the scenes” update, to make the Link screen faster and to improve search results.
- The search now uses our elastic search engine, giving you better and more meaningful results for your unlinked items.
- Better uses of indexes and the elastic engine makes everything much faster too!
On top of that, we’ve improved the search results in the Link with Core screens for some Connect flavours specifically:
- Comic: Now takes series popularity into account.
- Movie: Now now also digs into our vast library of “alternative” and foreign titles for movies to obtain a result that matches your movie.
- Music: Now also uses Discogs for finding results.
What is Linking with Core?
Connect is built around our central online database: Core. All factual data and cover images are used and shown directly from Core. If you have been using the Add screen to catalog your items, then most, if not all of your items will already be linked to Core.
If you’ve added some items “manually” or if you’ve imported a list from CSV (or from somewhere else), there will not be a lot of data in them.
To automagically fill in data for your items, the items need to be linked with Core. If you have unlinked items, you can link them to Core using the Link with Core screen which is found in the menu top left!
Earlier this year, we updated our Connect software to make it fully localizable / translatable. Shortly after, we went live with Dutch and German version of Connect.
Today, after the hard work of three loyal CLZ users, three more language options went live on the site:
Thank you, Philippe, Rafael and Pető!!
Continuing with our quest to revamp and re-design features and screen of the Connect web-based software. Today we took on the Import from CSV/TXT screen.
Connect and CLZ Cloud users often ask us about printing or exporting only a part of their collection, e.g. “how do I print just my wish list?” or “how do I export a list of just one artist?”.
Now, this was possible, but it took a few steps that were not intuitive for many users. You had to:
- Make the selection in the main screen first, e.g. by using folders, the collection status filter or the search box
- Checkbox all albums in the selection, using the checkboxes in the list
- Then use the Print or Export button on the special blue action toolbar above the list
With today’s update, we are making this a lot easier. And while we were at it, we also freshened up the user interface of the Print to PDF and Export to CSV screens.
Great news for all our German-speaking customers: starting today the Connect web software is also available in German!
Our programmers have been working for months to make the Connect software available in other languages (other than English). This meant:
- Make the Connect software translatable, to ensure that all interface texts come from a translation database.
- Making a nice and easy translation tool for our translators, so that they can translate all texts efficiently and also maintain the translation when new functionality is added.
- And of course, to do the actual translation.
And today we can take the next step: Connect is now available in German!
A nice update for all Connect users who use multiple collections, especially for those who have a LOT of collections.
New in this re-design:
- Single row tab-bar. No more lost screen estate caused by multiple rows of tabs.
- Got more tabs than fit on screen? Scroll the bar horizontally.
- Or use the next/prev buttons on the right to jump page by page.
- Alternatively, click the menu icon on the bottom left to pick a collection from a menu.
- The menu also provides quick access to the Manage Collections screen.
- Drag tabs to change their order.
- Double click a tab to rename a collection.
A big project our web-dev team has been focused on the past few months is making our Connect web-based software available into other languages. A huge project that consists of:
- Making the software translatable, basically ensuring that ALL UI text is retrieved from a translation database.
- Creating a nice and easy web-based CMS tool that translators can log in to and translate text, preview in Connect, etc…
- Doing the actual translations of all UI texts.
And today we can finally show the first results: Connect is now available in Dutch!
Recently introduced in the CLZ mobile apps and instantly very popular, so now available in all five Connect flavors too: the Card View.
(And… because Connect already had a view called “Card View”, we renamed the old view to “Horizontal Cards” and named the new one “Vertical Cards” here.)
Here’s how to switch to new “Vertical Cards” view: on the toolbar above your collection list, click the 2nd button from the left, called “Vertical Cards”.
Check out the screenshots below:
A big update for your Connect software today, with several cool new features and some smaller tweaks, all in one go:
- Easily add cover images by pasting into the Edit Screen’s Covers tab
- New Month and Date folder options for all date fields
- Improved Update from Core tool
- “Move to Other Collection” now possible from details panel toolbar
One of the most popular features we added to the Music Connect software in the past few years is the Pre-fill screen. You know, the screen that pops up when adding new albums from Core and lets you “pre-fill” some fields for the new additions, right there and then. Without having to go back and edit the entries afterwards. A big time-saver for most users.
The set of fields that is available on the Pre-fill screen has always been fixed, limited to Location, Owner, Purchase Date/Store/Price, Quantity and Tags.
However, after the release of this feature, we instantly started getting requests for more fields to be added to the Pre-fill screen. Which makes sense, I mean, if you always fill in a field that is not on the Pre-fill screen, you would have to “edit after adding” anyway, rendering the entire Pre-fill screen useless…
So today we are taking the Pre-fill feature to the next level by making the screen completely user-configurable. That is, to allow you to choose your own Pre-fill fields!
And while we were at it, we made some other related improvements. Here’s what’s new today:
- User-configurable Pre-fill screen: choose your own fields
- Pre-fill: new for Purchase Date: Fill with “Today”
- The Pre-fill screen is now also used to set field defaults
In today’s update we’re introducing new Add from Core settings screen, that lets you configure exactly which fields you want to download when adding new books.
While we are at it, we also tweaked the UI of the existing Update from Core settings and… we combined the two into ONE screens, with Add from Core / Update from Core tabs at top.
A nice update for all five Connect flavors today, in which we’ve added new progress bars to all actions in the software that can take a while.
(In the past, the software would just show a rotating symbol, not giving you any indication of actual progress or how long it could still take.)
We’re on a roll with the Connect development, so today we can release two new features for your Connect software:
- Search your collection by barcode, using CLZ Barry
- Set your CLZ Cloud Visibility per collection
We have finally been able to free up web-developer Stijn from several long running “back-end” projects, so he is making good progress on all kinds of smaller Music Connect improvements.
In today’s update, 3 nice additions / tweaks:
- Easier user interface for Columns and Sorting
- Remove/Restore the automatic Core images for Front and Back
- More fields available in Field Defaults
Today, we have updated your Music Connect software for you, with two nice improvements in one go:
- Enhanced Collection Status filter, now including On Order, For Sale, etc..
- A new Update from Core tool
After a few months of hard work by web-developer Stijn and UI designer / tester AJ, we can finally release this major upgrade of the Music Connect software, with many new fields and features.
Musicians, Credits, Headers in track lists, Composition, Chorus, etc..!
New in your Music Connect software: add web-site links to your album entries, using the new “Links” tab of the Edit Album screen.
Tip: paste a website link in the URL box and the description will be filled in automatically.
With so many users switching from the desktop software to the Connect web-based software, we are getting a lot of useful feedback about the things they are missing, or would like to see in Connect.
Today, a small update with 3 new settings to save screen space in the main screen:
- Show Filter Bar: uncheck this setting to hide the bar at the top with the Collection Status filter and the Alphabet Bar, giving you quite a bit more vertical screen space for your list.
- Show Collection Status indicators: uncheck this to remove the column with the status icons from your List View, giving you more horizontal room for your columns.
- Show pencil icons (for editing): uncheck this to remove the column with the pencil (edit) icons from your List View, again giving you more horizontal list space.
Oh and BTW: we also took this opportunity to complete re-think the layout of the Settings screen, to make the grouping of settings more logical. I recommend to take a good look again, maybe you will find some useful settings you never knew existed 🙂
Long overdue, but it is finally here: you can now select your own currency for all value and price fields in Music Connect.
Find the new currency settings in your Settings screen. Under Currency, choose your desired currency.
Choose from USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, AUD, NZD, CHF, NOK, SEK or DKK. Then use the Currency display setting to customize how prices and values will be displayed.
Another big update for your Music Connect software.
This time we added a new feature, that will save you lots of time:
New Pre-fill screen that pops up when adding albums
When adding an album to your database using the Add Albums screen, it will now pop-up a new screen called “Pre-fill album details, letting you set various fields right then and there.
Fields available in the Pre-fill screen:
- Purchase Date
- Purchase Store
- Purchase Price
No more need to edit your added albums afterwards!
Last week we implemented several small improvements to the Connect software, based on suggestions (and complaints) from you all, our loyal users:
Configurable Date Format for Edit screen
Two months ago, we introduced a Date Format setting to control how dates are displayed throughout the Connect software. But the date editors in the Edit screen still always used “yyyy-mm-dd” as the format. Which could be confusing to some users.
So in the Settings screen, under Editing, we have now introduced a new setting, specifically for controlling the order of the year, month and day boxes in the Edit screen:
New “Year” options for folders, colums and sorting
Some dates were already available as Year-only options for folders, columns and sorting (like Release Year, Publication Year, etc…), but we have now updated the available options to include ALL date fields as Year-only options, for example:
- Added Year
- Purchase Year
- Seen it Year
- Read it Year
Improved Auto-Capitalization feature
Small tweak for the Auto-Capitalization tools: it now correctly auto-caps letters that follow a parenthesis, bracket, square bracket, single quote or double quote.
More Totals in Statistics screens
The Statistics screen has been updated with more Totals at the top, e.g. for Purchase Price, Current Value.
At customer support, we were regularly receiving questions about the Edit Multiple screen, so in today’s update we made several changes to make it clearer.
- The checkboxes (for unlocking fields) have been replaced by clearer “lock” icons. Click the lock icon to unlock a field for editing.
- Or, just click on a lock field and you will receive a popup asking you to unlock it.
- An extra notification at the top explaining the unlocking and clearing of fields.
- Save button now indicates the number of albums that are being edited.
- Extra warning when saving “You are about to change data for 4 albums. This can not be undone. Would you like to continue?”
Using “Edit Multiple”
Quick reminder on how to use Edit Multiple:
In the main list, use the checkboxes to select some albums, and click “Edit” in the blue action bar that appears above the list.