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Zotero

DiRT (Digital Research Tools) has a new home! Please visit Bamboo DiRT to explore this excellent collection of research tools.

Web site: http://www.zotero.org/

Date of review/ name of reviewer: 4/17/08 [Lisa Spiro]

Additional reviewers: Erin Dorris Cassidy

Produced by:  Center for History and New Media at George Mason University

Cost: Free

Description: "Zotero [zoh-TAIR-oh] is a free, easy-to-use Firefox extension to help you collect, manage, and cite your research sources. It lives right where you do your work — in the web browser itself."

 

Advantages:

  • Automatically download bibliographic information, web page snapshots, and (sometimes) associated PDF files from hundreds of supported sites, including JSTOR, the New York Times, Google Scholar, and Flickr
  • Easily create bibliographies in a variety of formats
  • Integration with word processing programs means that you can add citations as you write
  • Organize research collections as if you are creating an iTunes playlist--drop citations in multiple "folders"
  • Tag your resources
  • Powerful search tools
  • Analyze and visualize your collections; for instance, create a timeline or sort your publications according to publication place
  • Large and growing user community
  • Excellent support
  • Upcoming features include the ability to sync collections with the Zotero server (enabling you to access your collections from multiple computers), share resources with groups, and get recommendations

 

Disadvantages:

  • Can be a bit sluggish with large collections

 

Tips:

  • If you are taking notes in Zotero, number them so that they sort well.
  • If you're not sure what to do when you're in Zotero, try right clicking in the application--by doing so, you can create reports, bibliographies, new collections, and more
  • The Zotero web site has some helpful online tutorials.  In 10 minutes or so, you can learn the basics of zotero.

 

More information:

 

Developer Resources:

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