Create A Searchable Catalogue Of Your Bookshelf With Evernote

Got a big book collection and don't really want to take the time to catalogue the entire thing? If you snap a photo of your books into Evernote, it will create a searchable inventory for you automatically.

Photo by MilousSK (Shutterstock).

If you're an Evernote user, you're probably familiar with the free optical character recognition (OCR) it performs on any photos you save into a notebook. It doesn't need a picture of a text document to perform OCR — just a picture with text in it.

Because the spines of all your books have the author and title on them, a photo is enough for Evernote to detect that information with its OCR. All you have to do is photograph your books clearly and save that picture into a notebook. By doing so, you'll be able to search for an author or title and Evernote will show you where that book is on your shelf.


    Surely this doesn't work on something like the example shown in the picture. Wouldn't the text details on the spines simply by way too small for anything to work with OCR?

    As you suggest in the article photographing the books clearly is needed which kinda suggests you can only really do a few books in each photo.

    Any experience with this actually working?

      I agree; surely it wouldn't work by just snapping a photo like the one pictured.
      Maybe they mean taking a photo of each individual book?

      Well if you read the article it says "All you have to do is photograph your books clearly and save that picture into a notebook"

      Obviously the picture above isnt clear, its just there for show

        "If you snap a photo of your books into Evernote..."
        I think it would be clearer if it read "If you snap a photo of your individual books into Evernote...".

        I don't think so, otherwise this wouldn't work "Evernote will show you where that book is on your shelf."

          Hahah I didn't see that part; good point.
          Then Craig's question is legitimate; I really can't see this working as there is no way Evernote will pick up every single book title, let alone the fact they will probably be written vertically, making OCR more diffcult.

    I use Goodreads. The app for Android comes with a barcode scanner and it took me just over an hour or so to scan in around 100 books. I can search for a book and confirm it is in my collection using their website or the app on my phone.

      Would this be useable, or is there something similar, for CD cataloging?

    I tried it on one shelf full of books. I can read the titles in the resulting photo easily, but after 6 hours and multiple syncs, none of the titles comes up on an Evernote search.

    Nothing like re-inventing the wheel...
    For PC-
    For iOS-

      Geoff, thank you for mentioning our All My Books program! :)
      Max from Bolide Software

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