Attention sports fans

Feed your sports card addiction with this powerful but free collection manager.

Like other collectors, sports card fans have a lot to choose from when it comes to software for managing their ever-growing collections. If you're into sports cards, why not try a free tool designed specifically to manage your collection? One that's optimized for sports cards, not a bunch of stuff like dolls and teacups and 45s...something like Sports Card Collection from 2030 Productions. It's obviously a labor of love developed by and for sports card collectors, which of course means, first and foremost, baseball card collectors.

Sports Card Collection isn't big at only 1.62MB (not counting your cards!) but it packs a lot of information into its various interfaces. Right off the bat we could see that SCC was going to be a versatile program. While there's no denying that SCC focuses on MLB cards and collectors, which are the most numerous and most traded sports cards, you can enter any sport you like, even a made-up one like Calvinball. We entered some players, which let us access the Players Menu and entries entitled Cards, Reports, Picture Viewer, and Export to Excel. SCC uses a tablike arrangement to manage your cards, with a main view split into four fields: Cards Added, Cards Removed, Cards Edited, and Last Search. The Picture Viewer is a slideshow-like pop-up display with a scrolling view of your card images. The main toolbar is called the Feed Bar, most likely because of its coolest feature, the capability to enter RSS feeds for specific sports, teams, and players. We quickly entered some titles and links for various feeds; clicking Current Feed let us choose them from a drop-down menu. Navigation arrows let us scroll through headlines, which appeared as hyperlinks in the toolbar itself. Clicking a headline opened the full article in the appropriate site: a fast arrangement that makes it easy to stay up to date with the sports world as well as your collection. The reports and backup features were easy to use, too, which we like because it means more people will use them. There's a neat collection under the Tools tab, too: Database, Application, and Collecting Tools, including a picture manager and even a Web site creator (with examples on the program's own Web page).

Whatever method or program you're using for your sports cards, Sports Card Collection should be on your tryout list. It's our first-round pick.

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