We founded CatalogIt out of our deep love for ethnographic art and our long-time passion for collecting. We sought to preserve the rich personal and historical narratives attached to the objects we collected, including the places, people, and relationships wound up in their pasts. We searched extensively for a product that could help us capture and share these stories, but struggled to find an option that held the proper functionality and fluency in ethnographic art and that was priced within reach for private collectors.
Hi! I’m Dan Rael, one of the Founders of CatalogIt, and currently the guy responsible for our sales and client services teams. My background is in Anthropology and Archaeology. My first job in the museum field was when I was in college at the University of New Mexico, where I worked at the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology. Later on, I worked as an archaeologist for the US Forest Service in California, on the Eldorado and Stanislaus National Forests. I also served two years in the Peace Corps, working with farmers in eastern Paraguay. I’ve been a collector of things pretty much my whole life- from seashells to stamps and coins, and later, of ethnographic art.
Needless to say, I love using CatalogIt to document my own collections—in fact, my own collection was the catalyst for CatalogIt. Perhaps my favorite feature is the ability to have my entire collection with me- on my phone- at all times. When I’m visiting a museum far from home and come across something that is very similar to an item in my collection, I can open up my record and add notes or even an image! I can show items to my collector friends or to experts in the field and add details or make corrections to my data on the fly. I’ve also documented most of my library of reference books- this has proven handy in that I no longer buy copies of books that I already have!
I’m one of the technical folks behind the product. With a degree in Mathematics and Computer Science, I’ve been building software my entire career. I’ve had the fortune to work at both small startups and large enterprise companies. It is my seven years at CBS Interactive which I attribute to the foundation and inspiration behind CatalogIt. I was a member of their data and catalog team and got exposed to all things ontology, taxonomy, open source, and standards-based.
I had a hunch some of this technology would be particularly germane to collector's challenges—flexibility, handling complexity, and speaking the details of what they'd like to catalog. The app needed to be delightful to use, intuitive, and mobile first. After many evenings and weekends it started to come together and has continued to gather momentum ever since. I’m very proud of the app and infrastructure we’ve created and I’m excited about all the great things it’s going to allow us to do as we continue on this journey.
In my spare time, which CatalogIt ensures is almost non-existent, I enjoy cooking, doing all kinds of projects, staying current with technology, traveling, and entertaining my two cats.
The CatalogIt team brings diverse backgrounds to our core mission. Our team combines deep experience in anthropology, archaeology, and museum work with decades of expertise in software engineering. We have a track record of working with large-scale enterprise software systems for capturing, cataloging, and modeling large datasets as well as building superior web and mobile software and applications. Together, we are thrilled to apply our unique skill sets to the challenge of creating streamlined, modern cataloging solutions for the collector community.
Together, the CatalogIt team embodies decades of strategic and hands-on experience in collections management, museum administration, software design and development, and customer service. Each of us are collectors and collections enthusiasts. We know the business of collections management from the inside out, making subscribers’ experience, informed, professional and effective.