Questions for Papers2 users

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by jojoba, May 9, 2012.

  1. jojoba macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #1
    So, after many years of using EndNote, I recently made the switch to Papers2 because I wanted something that was better for working cross platforms. Papers2 is great in some ways, it is much more intuitive and less cumbersome than EndNote, and it's great to be able to use citekey references in Scrivener as well as other apps on my MBA. In some ways, this app is supersmart.

    However, in the area where I first and foremost needed an alternative (referencing/citation), I'm finding it anything from slightly annoying to a royal pain in the a**. Being used to importing references from journal sites and google scholar with just a couple of clicks, the amount of extra work I need to put in now to edit distorted meta data is seriously off putting. I've tried the different ways of importing shown in their video tutorials and I've also been in contact with their (friendly and helpful) customer service, but it doesn't seem at this point that I'm doing anything wrong - or am I??? I'm also wondering whether importing references is generally easier on a mac than in windows.

    I'd love to hear from Papers2 users who have found a smooth way of doing this/ a good workflow for Papers. The thing is that I don't really need their document organiser and annotation capacities - I have other apps (primarily a file system in DropBox which is mirrored in iAnnotate on my iPad) taking care of that very well. So, I predominantly need Papers as a citation manager and good, cross platform cite while you write functionality.

    Any advice or success stories would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. dakwar macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2010
    #2
    In my opinion, Papers (1/2) is only good for document organization and annotation. Sure it can be used to as a citation manager within word documents but, as you too point out, it is a pain to use. EndNote is by far the best tool for this.

    I started using Papers pretty much right way when it first came out a few years ago. What I've found works best, at least for my preferences, is to import articles into Papers and let Papers manage and organize the article directory structure in Finder. I then export the entire Papers library as an EndNote XML Library and save the file somewhere in Finder. I then import this file into EndNote (I'm use X4 at the moment, on 10.7.3), discard any duplicates that already exist in my EndNote library, edit the citations if necessary (and quite often it is necessary), and finally use EndNote to manage the citations in my word documents. It is a bit of work but it works best this way, I think.
     
  3. jojoba thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #3
    Thanks, dakwar. Perhaps I have to re-think my strategy, then. Do you work with EndNote on multiple computers? If yes, how do you manage that? The same-library-in-multiple-computers feature (well, it's not really a feature, but it can be done via DropBox) was a major pull factor for me after EndNote messed up one of my articles while I was travelling and used a copy of my main library. I didn't think Papers was too bad with inserting citations, and I find them easier to edit than with EndNote (as in, fewer steps to go through, especially with multiple references and suppression of author names and adding page refs and so on). But I've only really tested it out on one paper so far. But the importing references bit is extremely frustrating. I've considered importing references to EndNote and copying them to Papers from there. But it just feels a bit cumbersome...
     
  4. jojoba thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #4
    I think I have to retract some of my ranting now. I've just realised that the importing business is MUCH easier in the mac version than the windows version. So, if I stick to importing references and pdfs on my mac, that should more or less solve my issues. Hopefully a future update will improve that capacity in the windows version.
     
  5. dakwar macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2010
    #5
    Joboba, I only work on a Mac and use use Endnote (and Papers) only there, and then only on my black MacBook (from 2008). So I don't have much of an idea of how to best manage the same library over Dropbox or over multiple computers. For me, importing references from Pubmed into Papers and then from Papers into Endnote, then editing in Endnote as required, and finally inserting into Word is a pain, but its the best solution I've found and is quite straightforward for me now. But yeah I wish there were an easier way to do this.
     
  6. jojoba thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #6
    OK, thanks Dakwar!

    What I'm finding so far is that importing by transferring just a pdf file, is hit and miss, but that downloading citations through the built in browser is pretty good and stable. So, one the first hurdle of transferring my existing library/pdf files is over, I think Papers might not be bad in terms of maintenance. I do still like their cite while you write functionality (magic manuscripts), at least on my mac. I had a couple of glitches with the last paper I formatted, but the insertion process is less cumbersome than EndNote, so I'm not ready to give up on it yet.
     
  7. jojoba thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #7
    I'm officially giving up on this app now. It can't import a simple article reference from a Francis and Taylor page. I've had it with trying to figuring this thing out. It's EndNote and a basic file system from here on.

    / end of rant.
     

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