Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Zotero

One more assignment submitted and I'm well on my way to the MSc, all without using referencing software at all.  Never underestimate the power of word processing software!  And yet, so often along the way I've thought "there was an article for one of the other modules that might be useful for this one... didn't need it for that essay so have no citation to check... which one was it again?"  followed by more trawling through folders for that elusive article.  I had a glance at Mendeley a few months ago but was mid-assignment at the time, I tried out EndNote when doing a different course (music? education? can't remember when it was!) and didn't find it to be worth the effort, I then resorted to creating my own Access database to manage references - I completely empathise with Miss Crail latest rant.  I am now about to start another assignment so this is the perfect time to explore Zotero - properly!


Big plusses with this one - it's browser based so all I have to do is click an icon to save references.  It was really easy to install and works with OpenOffice (a deal-breaker for me).  I love that it opens up just below your browser window so you can see it all properly, including the different folders you've set up to manage different pieces of research.  I suspect this would be even better on a "proper" computer rather than my little 9" laptop.


So far, so good!  And with that, I'm off to do some searching for an article on information retrieval.  I'll report back after the practical experience of using Zotero for an entire project.

2 comments:

  1. Did you get the Open Office issues sorted, then?

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  2. Hi Katie,
    To be honest I didn't bother to follow up on it! It's causing all sorts of annoying error messages in Open Office Writer now, despite being entirely uninstalled. I think a future blog post might be needed, documenting my trials and tribulations and calling for help. I know Zotero has a forum but the thoughts of signing up to yet another site right now...

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