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Endnote is a fantastic program that helps greatly with writing academic papers. It downloads reference data from the internet (i.e. pubmed), and allows you to quote them easily in your written work. You can produce references appropriate for the zillions of journals out there -- renumber them -- etc.
1. Endnote doesn't work in a reliable fashion with Dropbox (or google drive or nearly anything cloudy). It crashes, hard, from time to time. It crashes so hard that one needs Task manager to end the process. Annoying. The publishers of Endnote (Clarivate)suggest using the "sync option" -- their version of a cloud backup. Unfortunately, the "sync" option for Endnote is very limited. It will only sync a single library at a time.
The way you work around this is pretty simple -- you copy your endnote directory to another drive. When you use endnote, you use the copied library. Every night, you sync your library back to the cloud endnote library. The "syncovery" backup program is perfect for this. This keeps your work and home endnote libraries up to date with each other, and prevents crashing (well most of the time).
We would prefer a fix where Endnote implemented this by itself - -copy a "cloud" library into a local space, edit or use this local space while the library is open, and save the copy back to the cloud on closure. This behavior could be elected by a preference or library by library.
2. Endnote versions are not compatible with each other. Endnote 8 libraries cannot be read by Endnote 9 or Endnote 20. The conversion process built into Endnote 9 and Endnote 20 does not work.
The support for Endnote suggests zipping up the problem file, emailing it to them, have them do whatever there, and sending it back. This "once at a time" methodology may work for most users, but does not work for people who have many libraries. They also suggest just starting over (i.e. trash your old library). This generates an immense amount of additional work, as every reference that was linked before is now replaced by a new one.
Install both the Endnote 8 program and the newest Endnote program update (currently 20). Export the problem library to XML in Endnote 8, and import it in the newer version. This is clumsy but better than starting over, and also better than emailing it to Endnote.
I am not sure if the reference #s are preserved with this process. If not, it could create an immense amount of additional work.
Endnote offers to link PDF's, copied into its own folder space, to references. This process could make writing a single paper more efficient. However, it also adds a lot of storage space to the Endnote library, which is presumably duplicated. We have mixed feelings about this. We would prefer that Endnote offered to provide a link to files stored elsewhere. While this might break from time to time, it still does not add more file space overhead. We also are unenthused about Endnote building into its software a PDF reader. We would rather use PDF readers that we know already, and have Endnote put more effort into fixing bugs (see above).
A new online citation producer is https://www.citethisforme.com/cite/journal. This site is free, and seems to offer similar function, for small projects. As a random example, I searched for the title of the following citation, and this is what it came up with. I just followed instructions, and copied the citation into my clipboard, and pasted it here. Not too bad although it messed up the page #.
Zirn, S., Angermeier, J., Arndt, S., Aschendorff, A. and Wesarg, T., 2019. Reducing the Device Delay Mismatch Can Improve Sound Localization in Bimodal Cochlear Implant/Hearing-Aid Users. Trends in Hearing, 23, p.233121651984387.
Obviously there is something seriously wrong with the page numbering. Probably have to clean up the output of this program. It is not as reliable as Endnote. So overall: This program works (well somewhat), and it is free. It needs some work.
Downsides to citethisforme:
- The core function (generating citations) needs some cleaning up. We think better than copy/paste from Pubmed, but not a lot as you still have to go to Pubmed.
- A whole bunch of styles came along with the clipboard (should have been just plain text).
- It is REALLY REALLY REALLY full of intrusive annoying online advertisements. REALLY (:
- The website is pretty but also very buggy. It asks you to register, and then immediately wants a credit card. This is crude.
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