Do you struggle maintaining your references gathered from multiple sources, say – internet, PDFs, word files etc and it actually gives pain in your head when you try to search again what you already had searched earlier?
Then, welcome to my world. The work I am involved in, require me to gather references on diverse topic from multiple sources. The real chore began when I want to re-refer to the material I had studied a while ago and I am out of clue as to where to find the material again.
Bookmarks are great to mark a resource, but they soon began to clutter your search engine, plus they cannot hold references from local files. You can take my words with bookmarking thing – they are not really a solution, I have about 200’s of them and when I require something out of them – have to first locate the bookmark among this huge pile of bookmark folders.
I think I have made my problem clear – now about the solution.
Mendeley comes to rescue:
Luckily, I was not the first to experience this problem and actually people have already made free solutions to address this problem. The solution comes by the name of “Reference Manager”, and though there are many available I would like to talk about “Mendeley” which is a free reference manager with both desktop and web-app version.
With Mendeley, you can map resources from your hard-disk (in form of PDFs, word documents etc), as well as over internet. They offer a “web importer” which can save the page with crucial info. like author, title etc to your desktop app. The real power lies in tagging your saved links with tangible words. Once tagged, it offers a powerful search engine that can reveal meaningful resources with same tags within your library.
Also, it comes with a PDF reader so that you can internally annotate the files and preserve your notes over some topic.
Its really a very powerful tool. More about it can be found from its website. Here’s its snapshot from my desktop and as you can see its interface is really NEAT..