organizational software

Thinking about Jason’s post from this morning, which meditates on preservation and loss, as well as CJ’s post from a couple of weeks ago on somewhat similar themes, I am officially soliciting information from whoever cares to contribute on organizational practices, particularly when it comes to electronic tools.

I’m in the middle of a search-and-compile-bibliography phase regarding orality/literacy scholarship. Nowadays this involves searching the database, emailing the results to myself, then … I have to manually edit the results to put them into a usable format, and this usually means a word-processing document, which is a bit cumbersome when it comes time to search and/or reformat it all. The missing step, for me, is the ability to just download the database results into some software and then use that application to generate any bibliographies I might use in an article or pass out in a class.

First of all, has anyone successfully mastered the task of downloading data from the scholarly databases directly into their organizational software? I always run into problems of one sort or another.

Second, what software do you use and find helpful for such tasks? Procite? I always found it a bit unwieldy, but maybe I didn’t give it enough time to grow on me. Endnote? I’ve not used it. Something else?

The floor is now yours.

Update: Okay, somehow I pinged myself with this entry. There’s a TrackBack link from my “Sunshine and Smog” entry. Any idea how to undo TrackBack? Would that be Backtracking your TrackBack?

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4 thoughts on “organizational software

  1. At my office, we use Reference Manager, which combines all of the features of (and is compatible with) ProCite, EndNote, etc. The company promised that we’d be able to post our databases on the web with their software (which is part of our information sharing mandate) but alas, it didn’t ever work for us. But RM by itself is pretty durn good.

  2. Thanks for the recommendation, Natalie. I notice that it’s made by (or sold by) the same company that sells ProCite and EndNote. I’ll look into it.

  3. I just assumed that someone might have already developed such a beast. It’s not that complicated an idea, but…
    I guess I should check Sourceforge.

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