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FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  Ancient Coin Webmasters (Moderator: Sorin Teodor)  |  Topic: acsearch.com introduction of premium account? 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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basher_boy
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« on: March 24, 2016, 08:12:44 am »

Hello all,

Not sure if this is the place to start this conversation, but I thought that I would do it as I was shocked to find that acsearch had converted to a free/subscription based service. 

I can certainly understand the need to start monetizing such a service-it is a fantastic one.  It is one the sources that I go to most often in my searches for coins.  I am  hopeful that the subscription model will change to fit the needs of the occasional user a bit better.

As a light hobbyist who works on my coins, once in a while, in fits and starts the subscription choices do not fit me that well.  I think I would be better served by a per search type subscription.  I say that but feel that may not be all that useful because unlike many of you my searches probably resemble that of which a drunken meandering sailor may make.

The choices for subscription are 1 week, 1 year, and 2 year. 

How does everyone else feel?
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Carausius
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« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2016, 08:39:45 am »

The news isn't all bad. First, I don't think the annual fee is very high, though I'm a frequent user so perhaps more willing than others to pay it. There is at least one other similar service online that I know of that charges a much higher fee for unlimited access. They have also continued free acess (just listings-no sale prices) for academics, which is nice. Second, they have announced an ongoing project to add old auction catalogue listings, which I think is great news and adds tremendous value to the service.
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Andrew McCabe
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« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2016, 09:51:17 am »

I'm not bothered. The reduction in scope for non-premium users is only prices - which for collectors are pretty irrelevant as you can get price trends for free just by looking back Sixbid. And collectors tend not to be so interested in price comparisons. The increase in scope for premium users is the addition of pre-1999 sales which were never there before. And the price for a premium account is modest, to get access to the pre-1999 data. It amounts to the typical cost a provenance obsessive like myself pays for a couple of low grade catalogues, and I buy many more than that each year. This might actually save me money. For those who use acsearch for academic purposes, the image resolution for the free accounts remains "best possible" and the text and the search and bookmark functions remains unchanged.

This switch isn't to be compared with the Coinarchives switch a few years ago which completely cut off access to non-premium users by surprise (except for the same few months that are anyway available on Sixbid) and whose sub costs were many more times as expensive.

I only wish - as I've expressed before  - that acsearch switched back to allowing a frames view with a fixed number of coins per page. Removing the frames view option was a major downgrade to functionality for those doing searches with large numbers of results, allowing you to dive into the middle of a search at a consistently predictable point without waiting for 3,742 (or whatever) images to load, and allowed you to work through a large search over a number of sessions with a predictable resume point. But that had nothing to do with this premium account. Still, were acsearch to reintroduce a frames option with premium, that would make me even more willing to buy a premium account Wink
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Molinari
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« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2016, 09:57:48 am »

I'm not bothered either, since as Andrew said the only real change is no prices.  I'm excited about the pre-1999 sales so I will subscribe at some point.
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« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2016, 10:27:09 am »

Dear board-members,

as you already have noticed, we have launched a major update today. We figured that the new fee for the Premium-account (15 EUR for one week, 85 EUR for one year and 160 EUR for two) might lead to discussions, so we would quickly point out its background: since launching the project in 2009, we have invested approximately 5000 hours of work to it, and due to the enormous web-traffic the site generates, we currently spend a 5-digit EUR amount per year for our servers only. Additionally, the digitalization of the 121 auction catalogues from 1901-1938 has cost another 5-digit amount (not counting working hours), and we are working on expanding that part of the database.

We have come to a point where we either had to introduce some sort of new revenue to cover our expenditures and efforts, or cut back the project to a smaller size, and we hope for your understanding that we went with the former, not the latter.

As pointed out in the Newsletter and by Forum members, the access to the post-1999 database with all pictures and descriptions will continue to be free or charge.

Best regards
Lars, Simon and Markus
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Leu Numismatik
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« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2016, 10:32:07 am »

The ol' bait and switch, eh?  Wink

Perfectly understandable.  Thanks for the great resource.
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« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2016, 10:35:24 am »

I only wish - as I've expressed before  - that acsearch switched back to allowing a frames view with a fixed number of coins per page. Removing the frames view option was a major downgrade to functionality for those doing searches with large numbers of results, allowing you to dive into the middle of a search at a consistently predictable point without waiting for 3,742 (or whatever) images to load, and allowed you to work through a large search over a number of sessions with a predictable resume point.

If you add offset:200 to your search query, you will directly jump to search result 200 onwards. This can be done with any number after the offset: up to 1000 and should help organizing your searches.

Lars
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Leu Numismatik
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« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2016, 10:46:54 am »

I only wish - as I've expressed before  - that acsearch switched back to allowing a frames view with a fixed number of coins per page. Removing the frames view option was a major downgrade to functionality for those doing searches with large numbers of results, allowing you to dive into the middle of a search at a consistently predictable point without waiting for 3,742 (or whatever) images to load, and allowed you to work through a large search over a number of sessions with a predictable resume point.

If you add offset:200 to your search query, you will directly jump to search result 200 onwards. This can be done with any number after the offset: and should help organizing your searches.

Lars

OK thanks, that works.

I see results are limited to 1000, but that can usually be overcome by adding another modifier e.g. sextans petasus gives 130 results, and sextans -petasus gives 976 results all of which I can see.
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cicerokid
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« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2016, 11:34:44 am »


I would need all Athens New Style from c 1960 . With the ability to download photographs and place on my research page.

Thus I would need access to lots of old and maybe redundant companies catalogues that I never heard of. Especially that one ( name escapes me) that was once owned by a guy who owns Heritage that was into coin investments that soared and then went bust so I can locate my Pseudo Athenian New Style Sullan II coin. This is believed to have been bought in the early 70's.

That would be a test.

So when would be a good time to test the water ( on a week to week basis or whatever)?.

Seeing is believing so I would need to know what I would be buying and the availability of old catalogues to view.

For me that would be a great resource since I have been in contact with the ANS about a new obverse Margaret Thompson obtained a photographic record of from the "Northern Greece Hoard" 1966 before they were lotted out to dealers  ( but not published)and that the ANS cannot locate!

Cic
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« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2016, 01:07:03 pm »

Understandable yes, but still sad for young collectors with a limited budget that need information about reasonable prices when starting to build a collection. For experienced collectors the change doesn't matter much.

Jan
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cicerokid
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« Reply #10 on: March 24, 2016, 01:33:21 pm »


I would need all Athens New Style from c 1960 . With the ability to download photographs and place on my research page.

Thus I would need access to lots of old and maybe redundant companies catalogues that I never heard of. Especially that one ( name escapes me) that was once owned by a guy who owns Heritage that was into coin investments that soared and then went bust so I can locate my Pseudo Athenian New Style Sullan II coin. This is believed to have been bought in the early 70's. NEW ENGLAND RARE COIN GALLERIES

That would be a test.

So when would be a good time to test the water ( on a week to week basis or whatever)?.

Seeing is believing so I would need to know what I would be buying and the availability of old catalogues to view.

For me that would be a great resource since I have been in contact with the ANS about a new obverse Margaret Thompson obtained a photographic record of from the "Northern Greece Hoard" 1966 before they were lotted out to dealers  ( but not published)and that the ANS cannot locate!

Cic

Yes found it. Would you have catalogues of NEW ENGLAND RARE COIN GALLERIES?
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Ryan C
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« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2016, 10:22:06 am »

Understandable yes, but still sad for young collectors with a limited budget that need information about reasonable prices when starting to build a collection. For experienced collectors the change doesn't matter much.

Jan
I agree, I do not care about price, as far as resale value, but I do like to know if I am paying is in the ball park. Is there anyway to have a pay as you go, for occasional users? I have to admit I was disappointed to find that the prices were no longer displayed, I understand the economics, but it was abrupt to me, I guess I need to network more to see these things coming. Regardless it is still one of the only resources with the amount of raw data out there, and apparently getting better!
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« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2016, 10:52:07 am »

also, for occasional/ amateur users, could there be an easy donation link? I would gladly donate a few dollars here and there. Every little bit helps, I just cannot justify the subscription, yet.
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« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2016, 03:33:16 am »

I've been using the acsearch premium account for pre-1999 catalogues (in fact, pre-1939 catalogues from what I can see!)

I have some specific observations on difficulties encountered here:

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/board/index.php?topic=102458.msg655415#msg655415

The inability to go beyond lot 1000 in catalogues where the text is OCR is essentially a show stopper. There is no way that I can find to access lots beyond 1000 in a list (you can individually type in lot numbers but that's never going to work).

It would also be very useful to know when auctions are added to existing vendors lists. I sort of assume that the lists are in the order added, but a commentary section somewhere which says "15 May, added Hirsch 89" or whatever would be extremely useful.

I appreciate the added functionality really, but the nature of searching archived rather than current auctions means the above items are essential to make this workable.
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helvetica
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« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2016, 05:25:41 pm »

When Dave Surber died and Timeline took over wildwinds.com to put me in charge of it, we
gave Dave's widow a contract promising that - in compliance with Dave's policy when
he was alive - access to wildwinds would remain free of charge and freely accessible.

Of course this has caused a couple of problems with website thieves - one bloke with
the user name of "Lethe" stole over 33,800 images and texts of Imperial coins from
wildwinds (including my own coins and others which are not online anywhere else) and
uploaded them to a US website in his name with no mention of wildwinds. The
images have all been removed at my request (although the legal department of that
website at first wanted me to send them the 33,800 URLs of the images on wildwinds...)

Another thief from France - with financing from the EU, if that isn't corrupt enough, also
started to copy thousands of images and texts from wildwinds. I noticed it when he had
got down to the letter H and threatened him with legal action AND a letter to the people
who were financing him. After a bit of moaning, he removed them, or most of them, at
any rate.

But wildwinds - which was the world's first online ancient coins database, dating back to
1997 - will continue to be free in any case. OK, there isn't the same search engine,
because it's all in HTML and not SQL driven, but I hope that many people
will continue to find it useful.
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traveler
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« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2016, 06:42:40 pm »

Hello Helvetica,

Yes wildwinds is immensely useful. Thank you for keeping the website alive and free for all to use.
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cmcdon0923
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« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2016, 09:42:12 pm »

Hello Helvetica,

Yes wildwinds is immensely useful. Thank you for keeping the website alive and free for all to use.


I agree whole heartedly !!  I use it all the time, mainly for attribution purposes.  It is a fabulous resource for collectors !!!
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