DC Comics is Back on Goshenite

I’ve now updated the world’s least-used (certified by the Guinness Book of Records) service, Goshenite, so that it also scans the DC portions of the Lunar Distribution previews — it no longer just gets data from Diamond Distribution.

OK, since nobody knows what Goshenite is, I should probably explain a bit, right? Right.

So, I’m one of those people who order comics from the previews instead of doing the sensible thing and buy stuff after it’s in a bookshop and I can take a look at the comics. I’m just lazy that way. So for decades, I’ve been frustrated with how crappy and inefficient the previews thing is (unless you use the papery version, I guess).

Take, for instance, the web interface of the largest US comics retailer, DCBS:

You have tiny cover images, where you can’t really make much out. You have a snippet of text that’s so short that it’s pointless. There’s no way to say “only show me first issues”, or “only graphic novels”. When you scroll, you have to move your eyes around a lot. And you have to wade through variant cover version after variant cover version, and it’s just all so annoying.

So I whipped up a web site where the primary design goal was to allow quickly scanning though comics, without everything being tiny teensy, so I went with a one-comic-at-a-time thing… but with no scrolling, and where you can keep your eyes at the same point all the time, and just hit <Right> and <Left> to navigate quickly, and hit <Enter> when you see something you want to buy. With the Goshenite approach, I can cover the stuff I’m interested in in about ten minutes once a month, which is doable even for somebody as lazy as me.

(Other necessary features: Being able to filter out stuff I’m not interested in, and being able to “favourite” certain publishers so that I never miss whatever, say, Uncivilized is publishing.)

But a couple years ago, DC Comics left Diamond Distribution, which is where I was scraping the data from. And, like, I virtually never buy anything from DC anyway, so I wasn’t much bothered… but it’s been nagging at me.

So I finally spent an afternoon whipping up some code to give Lunar Distribution the same treatment as Diamond, and voilá souffle:

Oh, and while I was at it, I added a simple “search” facility so that you quickly can find all the books by Kevin Huizenga:

The user interface is probably too idiosyncratic for most people, but if you wanna use it, go ahead.

The UX on the phone version is probably more intuitive — you just swipe left a lot. (Which says something about the quality of the comics, I betcha.)

The site is goshenite.info — an easy-to-remember name for sure.

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