Discussion Forum: Thread 262103

 Author: OurBricks View Messages Posted By OurBricks
 Posted: Jan 4, 2020 14:24
 Subject: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
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 Topic: Related Software
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OurBricks (7970)

Location:  USA, Wisconsin
Member Since Contact Type Status
Mar 15, 2004 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store: Rix Brix
With the anouncement that BrickSync (a software app that keeps your BrickLink
inventory in sync with your Brick Owl inventory) is now open source and will
no longer be supported or enhanced by the original author, I've decided to
start putting some new functionality into Brick Seller that will help you manage
your Brick Owl inventory data at the same time that you update your BrickLink
inventory data.

This will be done in the following steps (separate releases).

1. Brick Seller will apply all inventory changes to both BrickLink and Brick
Owl whenever you make changes to your inventory data in Brick Seller (including
parting out sets).

2. Brick Seller will allow you to search for your Brick Owl orders and show you
a list from which you can view the details of an order or pick an order for shipping
in the same way that it does for BrickLink orders.

3. Brick Seller will monitor your orders received on both BrickLink and Brick
Owl and will automatically adjust your BrickLink or Brick Owl inventory as needed.

The functionality in step 1 has already been released. To get started, you will
need to update the Brick Owl API Key found on the Options tab with your Brick
Owl API Key which you can find on the API Keys tab of your Brick Owl Account
page. Using this feature, you will no longer need to remember to force BrickSync
to push your inventory changes made to your BrickLink inventory to your Brick
Owl inventory (using the blmaster on and blmaster off commands). When you start
using this feature, you should no longer use the BrickSync blmaster commands
but instead make all your inventory adjustments in Brick Seller (or directly
on BrickLink and Brick Owl). Please note that you will need to continue to use
BrickSync to monitor your orders received on both BrickLink and Brick Owl and
will automatically adjust your BrickLink or Brick Owl inventory as needed.

I hope to have the functionality for step 2 released in a few weeks.

If you are not familiar with Brick Seller, you can find a link to it on the BrickLink
Inventory Software links here: https://www.bricklink.com/links.asp?catID=9

Also, below is an overview of some of the main features of Brick Seller:

Brick Seller is a cloud based application. You access Brick Seller from your
web browser (https://www.brickseller.net). There is no need to download and install
anything. The advantages of hosting Brick Seller in the cloud is that you can
access your data from anywhere and when enhancements and bug fixes are ready
to be released, they will available to everyone immediately.

Brick Seller uses a SPA (Single Page Application) design to keep the data moving
back and forth between your browser and the server to a minimum and also eliminates
the whole page refresh problem you see with some browser based applications.

Brick Seller uses the BrickLink API, this allows Brick Seller to have a custom
user interface for working with your data. The data you see in Brick Seller
is current with what is in BrickLink. Changes that you make to your data will
be immediately updated on BrickLink. There is no need to export XML files and
import them using the BrickLink website.

When you register for Brick Seller, your inventory and recent order data will
be downloaded from BrickLink and put into your own Brick Seller database. This
is needed to make the Brick Seller search functions fast and to limit the number
of API calls. If you make all you inventory updates through Brick Seller, your
inventory data will always be in sync with BrickLink. If you happen to make
some inventory updates directly in BrickLink, you can quickly sync your inventory
data back up with Brick Seller.

Brick Seller will maintain an up to date database of all items in the
BrickLink catalog. Again, this is needed to make the Brick Seller search functions
fast and to limit the number of API calls.

When searching for items, your inventory data and the catalog data is searched
at the same time. This way, you can update the items you already have in your
inventory and add items to your inventory at the same time.

Brick Seller records all your inventory transactions in one or more Batches.
This allow you to view the history of your inventory changes. But the best
thing about Batches is that it let's you track the cost of the inventory
you add. For instance, let's say you purchased a large unsorted lot of used
parts. You can create a Batch providing a description and the cost of that unsorted
lot. As you add those parts to your inventory, those inventory transactions
(including your current price for those parts) will be captured in that Batch
so at any point you can see what your "yield" is from the unsorted lot. When
parting out sets, the cost of those sets is automatically captured in a Batch
along with all the inventory transactions.

Brick Seller assumes that you use the Remarks field in BrickLink to capture your
inventory locations. When parting out sets and picking orders, Brick Seller
will only show items in one inventory location at a time and in the order of
your inventory locations. This helps to keep your inventory data and picked
orders more accurate. This also helps to make the process of putting items away
in your inventory and picking orders more efficient.
 Author: Thunor View Messages Posted By Thunor
 Posted: Jan 4, 2020 15:19
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
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Thunor (1065)

Location:  USA, Tennessee
Member Since Contact Type Status
Jan 9, 2010 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store: ENIGMATiC PLASTiC
Well this exciting news. I didn't have a clue that there was an alternative!

Being an "old dog" that isn't too good with "new tricks" hopefully this will
be easy to learn.

A quick question or two...

1.)how robust is the server you are using?
2.)Is there likely to be downtime?
3.)How will it handle the sometimes severe lag from BrickLink, handling the numerous
404 errors and such?

4.) Is there no local copy of data at all? (ie archiving orders) that is something
BrickSync handles automatically.

5.) How often does the application sync with both sites?

6.) Security - keeping hackers out?

7.) Is the parting out function also not local?

I keep copies of all uploads, so that when I upload the same set I don't
have to edit again, other than adjusting prices. 8.) Will this require editing
every part out upload?

Thanks Much! Graham
 Author: OurBricks View Messages Posted By OurBricks
 Posted: Jan 5, 2020 19:54
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
 Viewed: 58 times
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OurBricks (7970)

Location:  USA, Wisconsin
Member Since Contact Type Status
Mar 15, 2004 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store: Rix Brix
Hi Graham,

Glad to hear that I'm not to only "old dog" around here.

Thanks for you interest. Brick Seller has been around for about 4 years. I
was the only user for about the first 6 months as I was working out the kinks
and adding functionality.

I've attempted to answer your questions below inline in bold:

In Related Software, Thunor writes:
  Well this exciting news. I didn't have a clue that there was an alternative!

Being an "old dog" that isn't too good with "new tricks" hopefully this will
be easy to learn.

A quick question or two...

1.)how robust is the server you are using?

Brick Seller is hosted by a large US based cloud hosting company that hosts
applications/database servers for hundreds of clients.


  2.)Is there likely to be downtime?

In the 4 plus years that Brick Sellers has been around there has been very
little downtime with most of this due to issues with BrickLink.


  3.)How will it handle the sometimes severe lag from BrickLink, handling the numerous
404 errors and such?

Brick Seller uses the BrickLink API for all interactions with BrickLink data
so I don't see the same amount of problems that have been reported from use
of the BrickLink website.


  
4.) Is there no local copy of data at all? (ie archiving orders) that is something
BrickSync handles automatically.

There is no local copy of the data as Brick Seller is a totally browser based
application. Brick Seller does keep BrickLink catalog data and a sellers inventory
and order data in a database for faster retrieval and to minimize the number
of API calls needed. Brick Seller also includes data on all the inventory transactions
that are done through Brick Seller in something called Batches (this includes
all parting out of sets). This inventory transaction Batch data can be downloaded
from Brick Seller.


  
5.) How often does the application sync with both sites?

Currently, only inventory updates made using Brick Seller (including parting
out sets) are made to both sites. Future enhancements will be made as described
in the 3 steps in the post.


  
6.) Security - keeping hackers out?

This is what I pay the hosting company to take care of. However, all access
to a seller's data on Brick Seller requires a login controlled by the seller.


  
7.) Is the parting out function also not local?

Parting out sets in Brick Seller is all done through the browser based application
and no data is stored locally.


  
I keep copies of all uploads, so that when I upload the same set I don't
have to edit again, other than adjusting prices. 8.) Will this require editing
every part out upload?

I have tried to make the Part Out functionality in Brick Seller as intuitive
as possible with several options to make the process as efficient and flexible
as possible. Brick Seller will automatically handle items that you don't
already have in your Inventory allowing you to determine how the default price
is set based on current price guide data. The Part Out process will present
items in each inventory location (determined by the value in the Remarks field)
one at a time. You have the option of having items sorted by your inventory
location values or ordered inventory location within up to 6 weight ranges (that
you can control). This is great for parting out large sets by picking out the
larger parts first and working through it with decreasing part sizes.


  
Thanks Much! Graham

I hope I was able to answer your questions satisfactorily. Please don't
hesitate to post more questions to this post or PM me if you prefer.

Thanks,
Rick
 Author: Teup View Messages Posted By Teup
 Posted: Jan 5, 2020 20:04
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
 Viewed: 61 times
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Teup (4370)

Location:  Netherlands, Utrecht
Member Since Contact Type Status
May 6, 2004 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store Closed Store: The T-workshop
In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  Brick Seller assumes that you use the Remarks field in BrickLink to capture your
inventory locations. When parting out sets and picking orders, Brick Seller
will only show items in one inventory location at a time and in the order of
your inventory locations. This helps to keep your inventory data and picked
orders more accurate. This also helps to make the process of putting items away
in your inventory and picking orders more efficient.

So it force-sorts by remarks? That would be a bit unhandy for sellers who use
the remarks field for, well, remarks, rather than storage locations. I for example
would want to sort by category name.
 Author: OurBricks View Messages Posted By OurBricks
 Posted: Jan 6, 2020 17:45
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
 Viewed: 62 times
 Topic: Related Software
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OurBricks (7970)

Location:  USA, Wisconsin
Member Since Contact Type Status
Mar 15, 2004 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store: Rix Brix
In Related Software, Teup writes:
  In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  Brick Seller assumes that you use the Remarks field in BrickLink to capture your
inventory locations. When parting out sets and picking orders, Brick Seller
will only show items in one inventory location at a time and in the order of
your inventory locations. This helps to keep your inventory data and picked
orders more accurate. This also helps to make the process of putting items away
in your inventory and picking orders more efficient.

So it force-sorts by remarks? That would be a bit unhandy for sellers who use
the remarks field for, well, remarks, rather than storage locations. I for example
would want to sort by category name.

Brick Seller currently assumes that a seller is using the Remarks field (or at
least the first part of it) to store the inventory location. I'll look into
adding a feature to allow you to order by the Category when parting out a set.
I assume you would want to order your items while picking received orders by
Category also?

Rick
 Author: Kesleyk View Messages Posted By Kesleyk
 Posted: Jan 6, 2020 23:37
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
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Kesleyk (99)

Location:  USA, Texas
Member Since Contact Type Status
Jan 30, 2017 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store: Kool Kid Bricks
In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  In Related Software, Teup writes:
  In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  Brick Seller assumes that you use the Remarks field in BrickLink to capture your
inventory locations. When parting out sets and picking orders, Brick Seller
will only show items in one inventory location at a time and in the order of
your inventory locations. This helps to keep your inventory data and picked
orders more accurate. This also helps to make the process of putting items away
in your inventory and picking orders more efficient.

So it force-sorts by remarks? That would be a bit unhandy for sellers who use
the remarks field for, well, remarks, rather than storage locations. I for example
would want to sort by category name.

Brick Seller currently assumes that a seller is using the Remarks field (or at
least the first part of it) to store the inventory location. I'll look into
adding a feature to allow you to order by the Category when parting out a set.
I assume you would want to order your items while picking received orders by
Category also?

Rick

This is great!

I actually sort my pick lists by BL part number, then color.
 Author: Teup View Messages Posted By Teup
 Posted: Jan 9, 2020 19:23
 Subject: Re: Brick Seller and Brick Owl Integration
 Viewed: 44 times
 Topic: Related Software
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Teup (4370)

Location:  Netherlands, Utrecht
Member Since Contact Type Status
May 6, 2004 Contact Member Seller
Buying Privileges - OKSelling Privileges - OK
Store Closed Store: The T-workshop
In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  In Related Software, Teup writes:
  In Related Software, OurBricks writes:
  Brick Seller assumes that you use the Remarks field in BrickLink to capture your
inventory locations. When parting out sets and picking orders, Brick Seller
will only show items in one inventory location at a time and in the order of
your inventory locations. This helps to keep your inventory data and picked
orders more accurate. This also helps to make the process of putting items away
in your inventory and picking orders more efficient.

So it force-sorts by remarks? That would be a bit unhandy for sellers who use
the remarks field for, well, remarks, rather than storage locations. I for example
would want to sort by category name.

Brick Seller currently assumes that a seller is using the Remarks field (or at
least the first part of it) to store the inventory location. I'll look into
adding a feature to allow you to order by the Category when parting out a set.
I assume you would want to order your items while picking received orders by
Category also?

Rick

Yes. Not planning on using it at this point, but just wanted to point it out,
as I think what will make or break the success is the extend to which you can
customise it as a user. There are a lot of different sellers with a lot of different
routines out there. I for example use the remarks to make notes on my pricing
policy.

One of the reasons that I'm not making my own software publicly available
is because it's very specifically designed around my own routines and it
would be a ton of work making it suitable for others. If you're serious about
making something that should work for many sellers, I'd suggest going over
how things are done on Bricklink and what options it offers. The more you can
mirror those, the more sellers will be enthusiastic about it.