Language Material Swap Shop

Small area for language related software developers. If you have a feature request please put in the appropriate place. This area is for developers of language software and forum software development only.
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rdearman
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Language Material Swap Shop

Postby rdearman » Wed Jan 25, 2017 4:34 pm

Recently Sgt Schultz and I have been talking about development and hosting of a language materials swap shop. The basic idea is that we trade with each other learning or native material. So if I'm learning Italian, and an Italian speaker puts up 5-6 books (in Italian) to swap for an equal number of books in English we agree to swap. I pick the books I want from them, they pick the books they want from me, and then I post my books to them and they ship their books to me. Of course this would work with DVD's, etc.

The idea here isn't to pirate stuff off the internet, but rather to swap legally available stuff with each other in order to learn each others language.

I wanted to host at some point in the future a "Read it, Swap it" website for language learners. There is one in the UK just for books, http://readitswapit.co.uk/TheLibrary.aspx the idea is you swap one of your old books with someone else, and you cover the cost of shipping your book, they cover the cost of shipping theirs to you. I think this would be a real boon for language learners, and not just books but DVD's, etc.

So my requirements, which Sgt Schultz asked me to write down are:

- User can create an account and list a book or DVD with a thumbnail photo of the cover. (This could be enhanced using some ISBN search API like Amazon provides: http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AWSECommerceService/latest/DG/EX_LookupbyISBN.html)
- Search function, by title, language, author, etc.
- Other users request a book swap by selection of one of my titles, and I'm shown all their books so I can pick one I want to swap for.
- Also ability to decline swaps
- After a swap is agreed the book is removed from the swapable books and wait for both parties to confirm they have received their items. Should be a field for a postal tracking number to be entered.
- After the swap is completed and confirmed by both parties they are given the option to rate the other swapper on a scale of 1-5, which will allow ratings to be displayed so people are more comfortable with good swappers (e.g. ebay)
- Some way to "go on holiday" so that all attempts to swap with me are disabled until I return.
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Cainntear
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby Cainntear » Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:13 pm

rdearman wrote:- After the swap is completed and confirmed by both parties they are given the option to rate the other swapper on a scale of 1-5, which will allow ratings to be displayed so people are more comfortable with good swappers (e.g. ebay)

I'm not sure that this wouldn't be a little too vague and ill-defined.

I think that with such a tightly defined goal, we could be very specific and objective, rating "speed of delivery" (quicker than expected, as expected, late (+never arrived)) and state of materials (better than described, as described, worse than described (+damaged beyond use)).
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rdearman
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby rdearman » Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:21 pm

Cainntear wrote:
rdearman wrote:- After the swap is completed and confirmed by both parties they are given the option to rate the other swapper on a scale of 1-5, which will allow ratings to be displayed so people are more comfortable with good swappers (e.g. ebay)

I'm not sure that this wouldn't be a little too vague and ill-defined.

I think that with such a tightly defined goal, we could be very specific and objective, rating "speed of delivery" (quicker than expected, as expected, late (+never arrived)) and state of materials (better than described, as described, worse than described (+damaged beyond use)).

Ah, that is a good point and I forgot. When you list a book or DVD it should be listed with state of the material. If you check out the link to the UK Book swap, they have a really good interface.

It might be worth having a number of things to rate on a scale of 1-5 at the end.
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby rdearman » Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:32 pm

For those who don't want to sign up to that website, I thought I would do some screen shots.

swap1.PNG
swap1.PNG (62.32 KiB) Viewed 303 times
swap3.PNG
swap3.PNG (23.71 KiB) Viewed 303 times
swap2.PNG
swap2.PNG (8.79 KiB) Viewed 303 times
swap4.PNG
swap4.PNG (20.68 KiB) Viewed 303 times
swap5.PNG
swap5.PNG (119 KiB) Viewed 303 times
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Cainntear
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby Cainntear » Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:51 pm

I just find ratings a bit meaningless -- mean averages in general are pretty weak statistics.

If instead we categorised and gave percentages of that category, you'd have something like

Cainntear delivers: 5% early, 5% on time, 90% late
Cainntear's goods are: 90% better than described, 10% as described, 0% worse than described

Suddenly you have a very clear picture of what to expect of me, and you can make an informed judgement. If you're happy to put up with the fact that I'm always leaving things lying and forgetting to do them seeing as I would rather undersell something than oversell it, then you'll be happy to swap with me.

But if you give out-of-5 ratings for the categories, you're going to find that "5" is given for "meets expectations", and there's no room in the rating for "going beyond expectations", and the only evidence of extra effort is in the comments, which are more anecdotes than data.

So my rating would be:
Delivers: *
Goods: *****

Whereas someone who delivers mostly on time and whose materials are always exactly as described is going to get **** (4) and ***** (5)
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby Speakeasy » Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:40 pm

I would not wish to render the Swap website more complicated than is necessary. Nevertheless, given that not all books are equal, I wonder if a “Bid-Ask” feature could be included permitting Swap Partners exchange items of equal value …

Swap Partner 1: I offer my fattened pig in exchange for something of equal value.

Swap Partner 2: I offer you a bushel of fresh eggs.

Swap Partner 1: Your offer is tempting, but I am looking to the future. How about if you gave me four chickens and two bushels of chickenfeed?

Swap Partner 2: I see that you are blessed with the virtue of foresight. However, I could not part with my prize-winning Silkes for a single Dutch Landrace. How about two Silkes and one bushel of grain?

Swap Partner 1: I see that you are no novice! I accept your offer.

Swap Partner 2: It’s a deal! Have your people talk to my people. We’ll do lunch.
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby galaxyrocker » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:26 am

Speakeasy wrote:I would not wish to render the Swap website more complicated than is necessary. Nevertheless, given that not all books are equal, I wonder if a “Bid-Ask” feature could be included permitting Swap Partners exchange items of equal value …

Swap Partner 1: I offer my fattened pig in exchange for something of equal value.

Swap Partner 2: I offer you a bushel of fresh eggs.

Swap Partner 1: Your offer is tempting, but I am looking to the future. How about if you gave me four chickens and two bushels of chickenfeed?

Swap Partner 2: I see that you are blessed with the virtue of foresight. However, I could not part with my prize-winning Silkes for a single Dutch Landrace. How about two Silkes and one bushel of grain?

Swap Partner 1: I see that you are no novice! I accept your offer.

Swap Partner 2: It’s a deal! Have your people talk to my people. We’ll do lunch.



I think that could easily be taken care of by allowing the users to communicate and share pictures and such. Obviously, there will need to be some negotiation, but I think a simple page where users can show what they're willing to exchange, and maybe even a 'wishlist' or certain books/types of books would be more than enough to facilitate discussions. What will really be the crucial factor is getting a critical mass of users.
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby crush » Fri Jan 27, 2017 4:31 am

I think this is a great idea, i've had several great Assimil books that i've wanted to pass on over the years and ended up just giving them to people who i don't think ever used them. I've currently got quite a few Catalan books that i've been lugging with me forever because i haven't found anyone interested in reading them.
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rdearman
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Re: Language Material Swap Shop

Postby rdearman » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:56 am

crush wrote:I think this is a great idea, i've had several great Assimil books that i've wanted to pass on over the years and ended up just giving them to people who i don't think ever used them. I've currently got quite a few Catalan books that i've been lugging with me forever because i haven't found anyone interested in reading them.

Yeah, that is my reasoning as well. I used to go around all the charity shops looking for language books. So I have tons of courses in languages I no longer have any intention of learning. Be nice to know they going to a good home.

BTW I setup a github account for this once, and spent all of about 15 minutes working on a Postgresql DB scheme for it. Is anyone going to setup a github repository for this? Or shall I publish the location of the one I setup and the rubbish work I did can just be deleted. :)
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