Site History

his site, the International List of Scale Model Related Web Sites (or ScaleModel.NET in short), was established on March 6, 1996. The goal of this site is to keep and maintain an international based directory of all the web sites which are truly related to Scale Models. The sites included in the list are categorized according to their contents or major interest, the list now contains 43 categories covering almost every aspects of scale, R/C, and railroad models. However, as the list grow, it is found that there are many sites can fall into several categories, and some special interest groups (SIG) are difficult to be categorized appropriately. To avoid misleading and to let the visitors quickly find what they are really looking for, a comprehensive search program for the database of the list is developed and launched in 1997. This program allows users to search keywords or phrase in any combination of the fields of the database. In addition, it allows recursive keyword search to narrow down the search result. A "key resource" feature and a "popularity" property were added to the program later in 1998 to let the user to locate the most useful and/or popular sites quickly. At the beginning of 2012, powerful video and image search capabilities developed based on the APIs provided by, respectively, YouTube and Bing were added to the site to allow the visitors to quickly find scale modeling related videos and image on the internet.

Among the many places of this site, the Model Gallery featured scale models of many classical things such as the HMS Victory, Stephenson's Rocket locomotive, Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle, Wright Flyer, etc., and is one of the most frequent visited pages. The Modeler's Bookstore (in association with (2001), (2003), (2008)) was initiated in late 1998, the Magazine stand was established later. The main purpose of these stores is to provide a starting point for serious modelers to find good modeling reference books and magazines (with good bargains, too). At the end of 2006, the Magazine stand has been revamped into an aStore and a CD/Video aStore has also been added to the site. The Modeling News Headlines section was launched in late 1999, which is a free service for the members of the list to announce their new product, web site updates, upcoming events, special discounts, model shows and contests information.

In addition to the normal retail and mail order hobby shops, eBay is a fascinating place to find bargains on all kinds of scale modeling items, especially vintage/antique model kits. This site has joined eBay's affiliate program through Commission Junction since as early as 2001, and now being a member of the eBay Partner Network (EPN). To help modelers to locate the best deals more easily, the Advanced eBay Item Finder is launched on September, 2009. This application is developed based on the latest advances and search technologies supplied by the eBay Application Programming Interface (API), and has passed the eBay Compatible Application Check process on January 27, 2010 to ensure users with strong eBay experience and the most efficient use of the implemented API calls. As a result, on the basis of the Advanced eBay Item Finder, a Model Kit Store, a R/C Model Store, a Model Railroad Store, a Tool Store, a Toy Store, and a Doll Store have been developed and launched on May, 2010. These stores provide easy accessing of the listing of the items right now on eBay in the corresponding categories, and allow the user to search or browse them efficiently.

At the beginning of 1999, to celebrate the third anniversary, the site obtained itself an easy to remember domain name, that's right, ScaleModel.NET! Hopefully, you will tell your modeling fellows this name and bring them here, and this site will lead you folks dig deep into the amazing world of scale modeling.

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