New Fields / Features continued...

Subscribe to New Fields / Features continued... 4 post(s), 2 voice(s)

Avatar (SF) Just Ha... 3 post(s)

Hey, great tool.

A simple organizational twiddle that would be useful would be a couple of editable user fields. Sometimes you’d like to have one (or more) keys to group and quickly sort all the auctions in a particular context — e.g., stereo equipment, baseball cards, toys, etc. Once you’re following 25+ searches, this would help a lot.

Then maybe, a “sort by” capability, so you could sort by User Field #1 and then by *Time Left." Maybe 2, 3 or 4 levels of sort would be a win.



Avatar (SF) Just Ha... 3 post(s)

Just a few more ideas after 2 days of use…

Add a “last run” field to the searces in search manager. Then, when you want to “do search”
you are given the option of receiving only new items since last run.

Why? You run a search for widgets on Monday, you get 50 sucked in — 10 days worth of auctions.
You peruse the list and quickly delete 40 and decide to just follow the bidding on 10 of em. If you run the search again on Wed, you don’t want those 40 pre-screened, deleted auctions to come back in again. Maybe you add the option of the user also entering a date in case he screws up and deleted things by mistake.

This should be easy since I think Ebay searches already suport this. If not, you could maintain an N-day cache of deleted auction ids, so you can chek against this before adding it in.

My last message mentioned some “User Fields.” Add to that a “From Search” field….which gets set to the name of the search which sucked in this item. Why? If you’re looking for widgets, thingamabobs and dohickeys, and each search sucks in 50 of each, you can quickly sort them into contectual groups to track. Note: you’d want to be able to have hierarchical searching, so you can say “sort by the from-search field, and within each such group, by time remaining.” Maybe this argues for a few different JBidWatch “views” by time remaining,. by group, by seller, by price range, etc.

Maybe some primitve spredsheet functions? Why? First let’s review. Here’s a use case given my previous suggestions.

Say I want to buy a widget. I do a search, get 50 auctions, then prune that down to just the 14 which actually represent the the two styles of widget I want. So, first, I’ll set the “User Fields” appropriately — e.g., 5 of them will be “Type A widget” and 9 “Type B widget”

Now, maybe I want to track these auctions for a while, and not bid immediately. I let some auctions complete without bidding. But…it would be cool if I could maintain some info….like Max, Min and Avg price which each type of widget has already gone for. If I’m looking for a $600-$1000 piece of stereo equipment, I might want to let JBidWatch run for 2 months and compile whole histogram of what that item trades for. When I am ready to jump in and bid, this would provide me a lot of useful info that most bidders wouldnt have. It could tell me, for instance, that even though I might be willing to snipe a particular auction which is now at $750, this item has gone for as low as $580…and maybe I should just wait some more. Useful, no?

Anyway, let me know if you find such ideas useful, and I’ll keep ’em coming.


Avatar Morgan Schweers Administrator 1,204 post(s)


Well, currently I use what’s called a ‘stable sort’, which is to say that when you sort the items by field X, things with the same value of X don’t change order. This means that you could order by (for example) clicking on the time left column, then clicking on the seller list, and you would have a list that was sorted by seller, with all the items per seller sorted by end time.

However, the user-defined columns is a little more difficult. It’s actually a pretty difficult feature. The auxiliary information would have to be stored with the item in the AuctionEntry object, and propagating the column names through everythough would be really frustrating.

What I’d vastly prefer to do is make user-defined tabs available. This would let you collate items into their own tabs based on what you’re interested in seeing. For example, you could create a ‘stereo’ tab, a ‘sports cards’ tab, a ‘toys’ tab, etc… Your searches could have either a target tab that they’ll fill into, or they could just fill into a tab based on their search name. (It’s why I created named searches in the first place.)

This provides most of the functionality you’re looking for, without having to clutter up the column list.

Does that sound reasonable?

— Morgan Schweers, CyberFOX!

Avatar Morgan Schweers Administrator 1,204 post(s)


The search code relies on eBay’s searching, and so an ‘only new items’ feature isn’t really doable without a LOT of bookkeeping, and would still be loading (over the network) the auctions that will be discarded.

I could support the idea of ’don’t re-add deleted auction id’s’, although that list would get large without a ‘purge date’ of some sort. I suppose 10 days being the limit on auctions, it makes sense to make it a 10 day purge rate, but eBay Stores items can last longer, and might be showing up in searches.

Much of the rest of what you describe could be handled by the idea of multiple tabs, and sending items between tabs. The last part perhaps could be best served by a ‘search completed auctions’ search, which once again could be filtered into its own tab, and you could then use that tab to determine the average price range at a glance.

I love new ideas, definitely. I have to filter them somewhat, based on how the code works, and how it can be massaged to work reasonably, but I’m very willing to consider the ideas. I can’t come up with all the cool features alone, I know that!

Thanks muchly,

— Morgan Schweers, CyberFOX!