Research and Reference Management: Part The First

To help me keep up with daily blogging, I’m going to try keeping the post window open all day so that I can add stuff easily.

Also, how do you like the new favicon? I thought it would be appropriate.

Today I’m spending a lot of time pulling references from various papers, adding them to my Cite-U-Like collection, trying to get the articles in PDF form if possible. Then, if Tulane doesn’t have the article I want via online access, I request it via inter-library loan.

I feel like I should have a flowchart for this. On my next break, it shall happen… (time passes)… Here’s the flowchart, and though it’s missing a few details, it’s mostly complete.

Here’s a little explanation. When I read an article, I circle the numbers of references that are attached to concepts I’m interested in. So, if the paper says, “widgets were frobbed using Magical Frabulation [12]” and I want to know more about Magical Frabulation, I circle [12] in red pen and continue reading. When I’m done reading the article, I go back to the article, find each circled number, and then circle the number on the actual reference in the reference section at the end. Then I use my hubmed search engine in Firefox to look up each reference. Usually I search using the last name of the first author and some pertinent words from the article’s title. If the first author has a last name like “Smith” or “Li” (do you know how many people named Li are on PubMed?) then I use a different author, if available.

I’m using the TabMix Plus extension, so every time I enter a Hubmed search a new tab automatically pops up. If the search worked, I carry on. If not, there’s a handy little search box at the top of the Hubmed results page that I use to try a different set of search terms. If it’s a medical article, I’ll eventually find it. If not, I have to look elsewhere and then my procedure has to be modified a lot. I left that out of the flowchart because it’s very case-specific.

Assuming it’s on Hubmed, I use my Cite-U-Like bookmarklet to post the item to my library. That’s the end of the first part of the process. I do that first part for each reference I want from the article. Depending on how I ranked those items in terms of how badly I want to read them, they will then show up in the proper order on my Cite-U-Like To Read list.

One thought on “Research and Reference Management: Part The First

  1. Pingback: Virtually Shocking » Blog Archive » Mind-Mapping and Reference Digging - Time Frame

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