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Reference Management Software

There are a plethora of choices for electronic citation applications.  Perhaps the key features that best represent a good referencing application are inherently the same criteria for good software in general, such as:

  1. stability
  2. accessibility (i.e., cross-platform, cross-application)
  3. supported
  4. accurate (generate correct formats)
  5. user-friendly

An application that is very close to meeting the aforementioned criteria is 'Zotero'.  In addition, Zotero is open-source and free.

There are a few quirks with the Zotero application that are useful to remember, such as:

  • The Firefox version is separate from the stand-alone application (i.e., you would need to export/import collection)
  • 'Removing' the selected item does not delete the reference from the library.
  • Adding a PDF link from a webpage may require manual entry of further Info (i.e., 'Save Link as Zotero item' results in a PDF with a link)

Zotero is the most versatile citation application that I have found, that is universal, free, and just works.  This app would be my first choice for OS X or Windows.

Reference Links:

    (a good list but not complete - missing Procite, Citation 9)

    (LibreOffice bibliography via database component... similar to MS Office... but free)

    (commercial Citation 9 for Windows)

    (Comparison of EndNote, Reference Manager, ProCite)

    (Personal Bibliography Management Software - a bit dated but interesting to compare with item #1)



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