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Randall J. Paske

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Everything posted by Randall J. Paske

  1. Thanks. I had Sidekick send up a new backup, and it is indeed showing on the website.
  2. Yep. The app is still showing info from an older backup, but the website says I don't have a saved cloud backup.
  3. Today I've run into another mess of titles that should be changed. I'm adding issues of Angel (the spin-off of Buffy the Vampire Slayer) to my database. ComicBase has six series of Angel listed, plus a magazine. Several of these are disparate titles that should be titled with their publisher names rather than as "1st series" or "4th series" or whatever. Right now we have: Angel - Published by Titan. Though listed under Comic Books, it belongs under Magazines (or possibly Books). The description says it collects articles from the Angel magazine about the TV show. Angel (1st Series) - A kid comic published by Dell in the 1950s. Angel (2nd Series) - The first Dark Horse run of the Buffy spin-off. Angel (3rd Series) - The second Dark Horse run of the Buffy spin-off. Actually a 4-issue miniseries. Angel (4th Series) - An unrelated manga title from 2003. Angel (5th Series) - An unrelated indie comic from 2004. Angel (6th Series) - The IDW series of the Buffy spin-off (which took over the numbering from Angel: After the Fall). Angel (Boom!) - The first Boom series of the Buffy spin-off. Angel (Boom!, 2nd Series) - The second Boom series of the Buffy spin-off. What a tangled web. Disregarding any desired changes to how series are named (using the year of first publication, etc.), this is all screwed up under the existing ComicBase guidelines. It should be more like this, if I have it right: Angel should not be in the Comics section. Angel (1st Series) should probably be Angel (Dell). Angel (2nd Series) should probably be Angel (Dark Horse, 1st Series). Angel (3rd Series) should probably be Angel (Dark Horse, 2nd Series). Angel (4th Series) should probably be Angel (Tokyopop). Angel (5th Series) should probably be Angel (Hi-Horse). Angel (6th Series) should probably be Angel (IDW). Presently, most of this can't be changed, so we have the implication that a kid comic, a vampire comic, a manga publication, and a black-and-white indie all belong to one group of series. It's messy and kind of bizarre.
  4. I watched the archived livestream last night. I thought Pete's explanation of the problem was clear, but I'm still not sure why something couldn't be implemented (as per Gregory's suggestions above) to make changes and allow users to accept them so we wouldn't have to settle for (and compound) past errors and inconsistencies. I completely understand not wanting to make users move all their inventory after a title correction--I don't want to do that! But can't it be automated, with an option to decline for those with a reason to do so? Their titles would then stand out as "unrecognized" after updates, but currently my titles stand out as unrecognized if I correct them. It seems somewhat analogous to the problem with OneDrive, which is something else that caused me a lot of grief. I eventually got it sorted out, but I spent a few hours going through the information, figuring out what to do, and fighting OneDrive to straighten it all out on my system. (It sounded simpler than it was.) The OneDrive situation was problematic for enough users that they've now devised a way for ComicBase to handle the move as long as you accept the action presented in a dialog box. That would have saved me some grief. Couldn't title and series corrections be handled with a similar approach? Display a dialog box and let the user decide if they want ComicBase to take action for them? From a technological view, the inability to correct titles in software designed for organization (without causing a lot of headaches for users) is a bug that should be fixed. From an archival view, the inclusion and perpetuation of inaccurate information is a strike against the product's credibility. From a capitalistic view, information presented incorrectly or inconsistently sometimes makes buying and selling more difficult, because you can't buy what you can't find. There are multiple good reasons to find a solution to this problem. It doesn't reflect well on an otherwise great product.
  5. I often consider putting the correct titles in my own database and just letting them stick out as "unrecognized" titles and issues when updates happen, but then my corrected titles and issues would never get updates, as they would no longer match Human Computing's master database. As one of my reasons for cataloguing my comics is to get documented value information for insurance (and also my curiosity), I want my values to be updated, so I stick with the ComicBase standard, even when it makes me cringe a little. I'll never be able to watch or participate in a livestream as it happens, but I've been catching up on the archived versions. This does at least have the benefit of allowing me to fast-forward the occasional conservative monologue, which I often find off-putting (no prizes for guessing that my views tend to fall toward the other end of the spectrum). Other than that, I've enjoyed the livestreams and learned a few things. I would like to see a discussion of these titling problems.
  6. It's worth noting that the confusion over incorrect and inconsistent titles in ComicBase cascades over to Atomic Avenue as well. So while we ComicBase users can figure things out and learn to work with them as they are, random shoppers using Atomic Avenue may not have a clue. It requires a bit extra to find issues of Donald Duck published by Gladstone, for example, if you don't realize that they will be listed under the title Donald Duck (Walt Disney's...) where the publisher is listed as Dell. I'm not yet selling on Atomic Avenue, but I imagine that more clarity and accuracy would positively affect sales. There are also seemingly random titles that are sometimes assigned to specials and FCBD comics. I've had difficulty finding some of those in the database. My most recent example: I just picked up a copy of a Doctor Who comic book that was exclusively released for the 2015 San Diego Comic Con. The cover logo only says Doctor Who, with 2015 Exclusive San Diego Comic Con International in the bottom corner. The indicia says Doctor Who: San Diego Comic Con Exclusive. I didn't find this among the existing Doctor Who entries, so I added it with the title from the indicia to my database. Only later did I accidentally stumble upon its existing entry: it's under Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor as #0. There are a few problems with this: (1) There is no "#0" anywhere on the actual comic book; (2) The San Diego comic does not precede the publication of #1--it came out around the time of #10; (3) Although the San Diego comic features the twelfth Doctor and is related to that series, the words The Twelfth Doctor appear nowhere in its title, unlike the series; and (4) While I might understand an argument for keeping the San Diego comic under this series as a Special Edition instead of #0, other Doctor Who convention specials are listed under their own titles, not as special editions of regular series, so there would still be a lack of consistency. It's a problematic, hard-to-find entry, yet I don't think it can be fixed without screwing up someone else's existing inventory. Publishers have definitely made a mess of things to untangle, and they are not themselves consistent, so discrepancies are bound to occur. I only wish they were easier to correct when pointed out, with some mechanism to transfer users' existing quantities to the corrected title or issue number. I understand that there are technological limitations in place, and circumventing them is well beyond me, but I hope someday this can be worked out.
  7. And it'll be hard, if not impossible, to change any of these now, because it will mess up existing user data. It doesn't seem like inaccurate or inconsistent titles and series can be changed once they've been added, unless they are very new (I just submitted a correction to Doctor Who: Origins, which included a misspelled Orgins, but I think the first issue is still upcoming and the title can be changed without harm). Even things as simple as Batman: Black and White being rendered as Batman: Black & White for the third series only (when it appears the actual comics used "and") seem to be stuck the way they are. I don't know the technological limitations involved here, and I know publishers don't make it easy with all the variants, reboots, and subtle title differences, but I sure wish it were possible to make title changes and have users' quantities for those titles shifted automatically.
  8. There was a terrible cartoon version of the Thing where his alter ego was a teenage Benjy Grimm with magic rings who said "Thing ring, do your thing" to access his powers.
  9. I saw an article on BleedingCool that, quoting MyComicShop, says that Marvel will be switching back to a better cover stock going forward, but there are still a few issues in the pipeline that will have the cheaper paper. They list a number of the affected issues. Here's the link: https://bleedingcool.com/comics/were-this-weeks-marvel-comics-printed-on-toilet-paper/
  10. I saw a CGC 9.8 copy of Marvel Previews #95 (first appearance of Miles Morales, though not in a story) go for over $11,000 on eBay last year, so, yes, some of them are worth money to some folks.
  11. There was a period when Gladstone tried publishing a number of their Disney titles with covers consisting of the same paper stock as interiors. Most, if not all, of these are noted in ComicBase as "newsprint covers" -- see Donald Duck Adventures (Gladstone), for example, where #34 says "Newsprint covers begin" and #43 says "Newsprint covers end." This situation with Savage Spider-Man and a few others is a bit different but seems somewhat analogous. "Newsprint" wouldn't be the right term for whatever paper was used for them, and I understand not wanting to go crazy adding minute detail about cover stock for everything in the database, but it would seem worth noting that these issues have unusual characteristics. Not only will they not hold up as well in the long term, but more copies than usual were reportedly damaged in shipments to retailers, making fewer high-grade copies available from the outset.
  12. Yes, I still can't consistently reproduce the problem myself. It only happens with some of them. I still have a lot of question marks. I'll keep trying to figure it out. This was the first time I'd seen it happen since I initially posted. The condition of this one was Fine before it got changed to NM. They've been changed from other conditions, though. I can't add much else at this point.
  13. I increased the number of backups kept after your previous suggestion. The change in condition occurred relatively quickly after I added this last example--before a backup could show it in its previous state--because I added the comic on Friday (or possibly Thursday) after the update last week and made a backup on Friday night. I've never manually selected or scheduled Rebuild Lists or Optimize Database. I've sent my data to the cloud periodically, which seems to trigger one or both of those actions.
  14. I just noticed that every comic this has happened with has had a cover price of 0.75 or less (USD), whether it's an old Dell comic or a recent FCBD issue. I don't know if that could have anything to do with it, but it's kind of odd. On the other hand, it could just be that most of the comics I've used the grading tool on have been older (and more beat-up) or FCBD issues with store stamps or stickers. It's the only commonality I'm seeing among the affected comics, though.
  15. It has happened again: another comic that I graded using the grading tool somehow got switched back to Near Mint. I checked through my backups, and unfortunately, I don't have a backup that shows the comic with the grade it was originally assigned. Its first appearance in a backup shows it in Near Mint with the grading tool's data in the Grading Notes field. I can eliminate the ComicBase update as the cause of the problem, however. I added this comic after last week's update. I found it using the Advanced Search option outlined earlier in this thread. I'm still not sure why or exactly when these are changing, but updates were not a factor this time.
  16. Yes, that's a good point--it wouldn't make sense to combine publishers from different countries. I can think of a lot of other examples of series that went through multiple publishers: Walt Disney's Comics and Stories went from Dell to Gold Key, to Whitman, to Gladstone, to Disney, back to Gladstone, to Gemstone, to Boom, to IDW, all within the same series. Popeye went from Dell to Gold Key, to King, to Charlton, back to Gold Key, to Whitman. Later publishers (Ocean, Harvey, IDW) started new series. Many other licensed Dell titles went to Gold Key and Whitman without starting new series. Yummy Fur went from Vortex to Drawn & Quarterly with continued numbering. Bone went from Cartoon Books to Image and back again. Eclipse and First continued a number of titles when Pacific went defunct. However, nothing else really comes to mind where one publisher did the series, another publisher did a collection, and it was presented as part of the same series. I'm sure it's happened, but I can't think of examples at the moment.
  17. Thank you. I did consider that it had a different publisher, but there are plenty of series in the database with multiple publishers under one title, and that clouded the issue for me. Nonetheless, this gives me a way to list the book.
  18. I have a book called Hawkeye Omnibus Volume 1 published in the UK by Panini, who apparently license Marvel material for reprint there. It contains the stories from what is listed in ComicBase as Hawkeye (4th Series) #1-11, but it does not align neatly with any of the collections already listed under that title. It is also not the same as what is listed separately in ComicBase as Hawkeye by Matt Fraction and David Aja Omnibus (I'm not sure why that has its own listing instead of being another entry under Hawkeye (4th Series).) So I'm not sure how to add my book. There are already books listed under Hawkeye (4th Series) as Bk 1, CS 1, and Dlx 1, and this doesn't have exactly the same contents as any of those. It comes closest to the Dlx 1, but it doesn't contain the additional story from Young Avengers said to be contained in that book. Its cover uses the same artwork as Bk 1, but the trade dress is somewhat different. To complicate matters, my copy says "Third impression" in the indicia, which I take to mean "third printing." So maybe it needs to be added three times--? What would be the correct way to add this to the database?
  19. A figure reachable with Vampirella variant covers alone...
  20. I meant that it was my first time using the Advanced Find feature. I've spent the last six months or so entering my collection into the database, so I'm still relatively new. I've been doing the automatic backups, but I've only been keeping five of them. I'll have to go in and change that. Thanks.
  21. Thank you for that. It took me a minute to locate the Advanced Find function (first-timer!), but plugging that search in turned up 11 issues that have changed back to NM but retained the grading notes. That includes the four issues of Uncle Scrooge I've already mentioned. It does not include the issue of Captain Marvel Adventures that I went back and fixed. Twelve comics is not a lot, but it's about 16% of the ones I've used the grading tool on. I'm still not sure what else they have in common.
  22. As I pretty much expected, none of the comics I entered and started watching changed conditions after the new update. I can't provide any further information or evidence as to why or how some conditions have changed before, but I'll try to watch out for it in the future. At least the Grading Notes field helps to show that I'm not imagining it.
  23. I understand that the factors causing this problem are likely obscure. I've added another batch of comics graded with the grading tool that I'll be keeping an eye on. Probably nothing will happen now that I'm paying special attention, but we'll see. So far, I closed the program and went back in, and none of this batch changed conditions. I'll do a new backup right before this week's update, and I'll check things again after the update is installed.
  24. Only one of the four affected issues (#114) is listed as changed in last week's update log.
  25. My update settings are shown below. I don't know how easy it is to replicate the problem. It hasn't happened to every item for which I used the grading tool, only some of them, so there must be some additional factor I haven't figured out yet. I'm also not 100% certain that the update caused the problem; I only know that I noticed that the conditions were changed back to "Near Mint" sometime after updating. It's possible that they changed before I updated but I didn't notice it until afterward. I've got more comics coming up in my cataloging project that I'll be using the grading tool for. When I get to those, I'll pay very close attention and take notes to see if I can figure it out, assuming it happens again.
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