Functional inventory web or mobile app

Hello, fixers,

I’d like to find a good inventory app that is most universal and optionally leverage the build ML photos text recognition capability of newer smartphones.
The problem: I have a bunch of boxes with various PSU, cables, connectors, semiconductor parts, and laptops ( mostly broken but with functional parts ). and no way to keep track of them - all arranged in boxes by theme [PSU box, Cables box etc.]. But in a while, I forget what I have…
I started thinking a long time ago for a searchable DB that is easy to input specs&pictures and search.

Usual resolution: I usually end up buying more stuff [ as it’s easier and more convenient :wink: ] instead of reusing perfectly good parts.

So far I have started evaluating some apps: tookstok, inventory list, inventory, BoxHero, Sorty although apps have very useful features they are fiddly to input the required info and limited eateries for free service.

This was always a rubbing rock but now I’m in moving and have to decide what to do with all useful “stocks” that I have in my garage, and either donate or find a way to keep track of this with minimum effort [ as beside my hobby as a repairer I have other things to do in my spare time :wink: ]

Any input and useful tips are welcome :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Fixit regards,

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Hi Martin,

If it’s a fairly fixed stock of things, you might be interested in asset management rather than inventory management. Snipe-IT being one libre software one that I know of.

I have also heard of PartKeepr being used by hackerspaces for managing inventory of electronics components.

Sometimes AlternativeTo can be helpful for finding alternatives - e.g.



hi, When I read your post, it sounds like you may be saying

1 Capture ease
a capture ‘stuff’ that has not QRcode or other words/numbers (that could be OCR’d etc… )
b capture 'stuff that has an identification, so can be tagged using the inbuilt phone technology

2 Visibility and Discoverability tool (aka easy search)
there are many. once you solve 1, 2 is super easy.

To answer 2, need 1 clarification.

Plus can you tell me how you would like to interact with this app
More than one way, for example
will you actually be a ‘good record keeper’ and tell the system when you use something. This is traditional accounting.
Or are you more after to-do list style categorised listing. This style of listing suits ad-hoc listers, where next you go to your list, one remembers, oohh i used that… so then swipes it as"gone"


Hi Suz,

Thanks for thinking the time to reply.
Yes you understand the meaning correctly :slight_smile: Capture picture, do AI recognition of the type of the object, confirm with user if confidence level is low, and provide user with ability to enter [templated] input/output info e.g. PSU for Christmas lights if captured picture and AI can’t pre-populate the template for PSU specifications.

As this is not for a ‘standard’ shop or warehouse use case so the input will be type ‘2’ style.

Well QR core encoding sounds interesting but it will involve creating the codes and printing them which becomes more type 1 interaction’ a good recod-keeping style. Would require an affordable QR code label printer? I have a standard label printer that’s cheap enough but can’t print QRs and the proper Brother ones are expensive for home infrequent use.

Kind Regards,

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Hi Neil,

Thank you! I think one of suggest may do the job, well spotted will check them out.


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cool. understand now what we are looking for.
will come back here in a few days. On weekend will check out if any new ones in this space, as not looked at any for over few years.

I tested the build ML photos text recognition capability of the newer smartphones this weekend. I got alot of errors. My experience has been fast super easy data capture for flat surfaces like invoices/receipts into accounting systems.

In doing this I stumbled on a super easy efflortless smartphone scanning SDK. Here is a right up with video to show it in action. It offers at least 9 different scanning scenarios. Three scenarios are unstructured. Majority were structured scan scenarios e.g. bottle label, package label, product label on box, plus the vast array of different types of bar codes. Bar codes will always give better results as there is metadata built in.

If you want to give a try, to be clear which scanning scenarios suit your use-case, there is a free app

I found the capture quality astounding. I did continous and cleared my 3 boxes of ‘bits’ in less than 2 hours. Thanks to you, I got a job done i have been putting off for 9 months.

I have not yet found an app that has this SDK on top yet. The SDK launched in mid Jan 2023. Self-scanning is a technology shift underway. It is going mainstream so the days of awful image OCR apps will be gone in near future.

In the mean time, I cut and pasted my capture into a trusty excel item list (means capture is now in a tab deliminated file). This means I can import the data into my preferred list management app, whenever I wish. I did not do this step this weekend.

Out of curiousity, do you use an existing list management app for personal use or a catalog app like for ebooks / movies or something else?

One last questions. Once you scan an item that has little info e.g. part ID only. Do you manually search a parts database or google generally… I dont have knowledge of the datasets that are open for your boxes of parts. If you know what open source data-sets exist, please share. Else we can look at that later.