Monday, December 7, 2009

Endnote, Delicious or Zotero?

Have you ever been curious about the uses of End Note, Delicious and Zotero? No they are not tangy spices used in exotic dishes served up at a tropical resort (wouldn't that be nice) - they are software used for storing and managing information and references.

is a social bookmarking site used to compile bookmarks/websites which you can share with colleagues or students and access from any computer. This is a good first place to search for information as the popular and well-used stuff is often already there.

While you can store and share information happily with others, you cannot export the references to a document – I investigated this early on. Delicious is no good for storing information you access from library databases only stuff off the Internet. It is great for sharing resources with your students or if working on a project with colleagues.

Endnote as you probably already know is a place for storing references and you can connect to information on online databases and extract it into Endnote. It is more an individual application and not as easy to share references. You need access to a licence, and if you ask ISS nicely they may have a spare one they can load on your computer. Training is via ISS. There is an alternative solution - Zotero.

Zotero has similar functions to End note but the big difference is that it is an open and free web-based software. So you can have it on your computer at home. I do find it easier and more intuitive to use than Endnote. However, I am still exploring it and am interested to hear from others who are using it. What do you like or not like? One drawback is the need to be connected to the Web to use it, but it is more portable and accessible.

You can download version 1.0 (not the beta version) from:

I find Zotero easy to use, but it is best to have a look for yourself. Check out the video and list of features, download it and have a play and see what you think.