The AED at 3,100,147
- by Bruce E. McKinney
The history of books is in the details
The New AE is here and it will take some time to understand how this site is different from the version developed by Weicheng Chu of Los Angeles four years ago. This time around the developer is Calsoft. AE has become, over the past nine years, a group of modules developed one at a time: AE Monthly, the AED, the Auction Search, Books for Sale, Matchmaker and Footnotes. In this redevelopment Footnotes is incorporated into the AED and the other elements now function together. The most important example of this is how searches are managed. The AED, Books for Sale and Upcoming Auction Lots are now searched together. Results for the database selected appear on screen while results from the other databases appear as blue number links to their related results. If clicked, you already know how many results there are and they are queued for review. The numbers themselves provide relative information even if the actual results are not examined.
For members who wish to sell material the interleaving of search results with material in upcoming auctions and the AED leads to a higher probability of sale. In beta testing every aspect of the site benefited from the integration of search results.
Searching multiple complimentary databases provides more complete answers. The AED, by itself, deliverers 4 to 8 times the results of any other database tracking auction history and does so in seamless union with Books for Sale and Upcoming Auction Lots. The effect is to deeply intensify search focus, to encourage digging and bring more intense, possibility important matches out. Simply said, when you place current listings in the context of auction history they gain context and reference. In the AED "Maps" yield 370,001 records, "maps New York" 59,463, "maps New York Ulster" 17. The matches in Books for Sale and Upcoming Auctions, two each, yield precise and interesting matches. Experience will confirm these databases running together work very effectively.
The scale of the AED encourages precision. Precision in turn leads to changing perceptions of the results. Comparative numbers become part of what we can and immediately do begin to know. An item at auction or in Books for Sale that has few related entries in the AED is immediately a candidate for purchase. In a busy world of too few minutes and too many books these search results provide immediate clarity.