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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Note Taking Help

I'm doing some web research (actually I'm constantly doing web research) and I consistently find myself:

1. Finding an interesting page
2. Copying and Pasting Content from the Page
3. Creating a small citation to the page
4. Editing my thoughts

This is part of creating blog posts or part of doing research.

I've looked at various tools to use as part of this, but I'm finding that what I really want is a better Copy-to-Clipboard function (in Firefox) that would include a citation to the original source as part of the copy operation. In other words, it would combine steps 2 & 3.

Any suggestions on that?

Also, I've been evaluating various clipping, note taking tools such as Zotero, Clipmarks, Google Notebook and my frank opinion is that it forces me to use an interface that is limited as compared to putting it into a large document to play with. Any thoughts on this?

16 comments:

Tawny said...

Have you tried Microsoft OneNote? When you past to the notebook, it gives the path from which you copied.

Tony Karrer said...

Tawny, I looked at it briefly and didn't realize it did that? It seemed more like it was aimed at copying into OneNote rather than creating something for other applications. Maybe it's both.

And so I understand, OneNote costs money right?

John Hannafin said...

I use the ScrapBook add-on for Firefox and find it great.

John
Jabit.com

Juha_Antero said...

I am using constantly WebResearch: http://www.macropool.de/en/index.html

Ian Usher said...

Er, diigo works well (kind of delicious on steroids, I like the annoation capability) and as previously mentioned Scrapbook in firefox is good. Not sure if either of them meets your "large document" needs though...

vyonkers said...

I personally prefer Zotero and I know in the directions there is a way for it to interface with Word (there is an add-on). I have not tried it yet as I haven't had the time. I am assuming it works like EndNote (which is not computer based) which allows you to load the citation in as you type a paper.

christytucker said...

I've used Zotero in the past, exporting the content to Word when I needed to finalize the bibliography. It was helpful for getting content into APA format, which I needed for a specific project.

For my everyday web research, I use Diigo. As Ian said, it's like delicious on steroids. It allows me to highlight content I want and add my own notes and tags. Diigo also lets you group sources into lists, which might help you group things together. You can export the content in CSV format (and other formats) if you want to do more editing and comments elsewhere.

Rebecca Thomas said...

You might take a look at EverNote if you haven't.

AJC said...

Tried Flock?

Michael Hanley said...

I'm with vyonkers - zotero (http://www.zotero.org/) is a fantastic tool for capturing and notating content. I used it when undertaking research for my MSc thesis.
One of its really neat pieces of functionality is its integration with FireFox, as well as its tag content and tag filter ability and its referencing capabilities.
For those, like myself who are on the move and may work between a laptop, a work-based and a home-based desktop, I recommend del.ic.ious to grab and store links in a centralised location for further reference at another time (I'll often "bookmark" an interesting link in work before spending time reading an article at my leisure at a later time).

Nadia said...

Hi Tony. I'm also using Scrapbook for Firefox (or Flock). I like the multi-volume option and the fact that you can capture web-content but also files of various types, and include highlighting and small notes. Google Notebook is also very convenient for clips + comments, although not convenient if you need to access your notes aoffline. Evernote comes with a Universal Clipper which allows for easy clipping and tagging of notes.

Janet Finlay said...

Have you seen Snip!t? www.snipit.org

Tony Karrer said...

Several of these solutions are really cool and I'm checking them out, but I was actually looking for something much simpler.

It basically just needs to:

1. Allow me to select text on a web page

2. Do some operation to invoke

3. Result would be a clipboard with the selected text AND the page with an appropriate link (ideally suitable for pasting into a blog post).

With most of these solutions, I have to make the note and then do something else to get it into the clipboard in the format I want. Are there simple tools as I'm describing? Or does everyone use one of these more complex tools?

bill7tx said...

On the Mac, NoteBook (www.circusponies.com) works very well for this. It isn't free, but on the other hand, it's only $49.95 and upgrades are free.

Nadia said...

Google Notebook and its add-on for Flock or Firefox will do exactly this. And it's free.

Ralph Poole said...

Yes, I agree with the last post by Nadia. Google Notebook lets you save entire pages or just portions of a page. It keeps the web reference so that you can go back and find the source document. In addition you can also add your own text to the document.

I also like the fact that you can share your notebook so that people get the benefit of your research.