The Epistemist

…on the knowledge journey

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Tools for research

April 29th, 2008 · No Comments · dissertation, tools

  I am in my second month of the doctoral program, and still trying to settle on the best workflow and tools to be able to efficiently combine my academic work with my day job and my family life. I am sure it will take me another couple of months to get into the comfortable routine. As of right now, my processes and tools are these:

1. Every book and article that I am using is in EndNote. EndNote is only for actual active material that I have or will be working with.

     a. I try to minimize manual data inpit, so I seach for the books I need cited at Worldcat, and if the book is listed there – and it usually is – I can just click on Export to OneNote and I am done!

2. For extended writing sessions, I try to use Dragon Naturally Speaking if the environment is quiet. This is a great time saver because I am not a touch typist. And the quality of speech recognition is very good.

3. I take notes in Microsoft OneNote.

     a. I read the book or article and mark important passages with a sticky flag.

     b. Print reference from EndNote to OneNote so that I have a full record

     c. A link to a PDF is added to the note entry. The PDF is stored in the “Articles” folder on my HD

     d. I type or dictate notes– paraphrase in black font, quotes in purple font and quotation marks.

     e. When the material is processed, I mark it with a + in the OneNote page.

     f. The keyword “notes” is added to EndNote

4. For the overview type books and articles, I take notes in MindManager and then attach the file to the OneNote page.

5. I am using EverNote – to take notes and clippings that are saved to the Web, as a temporary holding area. I use it for recommendations, suggestions, quotes, pointers, quick thoughts – I can email a note to Ever Note from my Blackberry.

6. For articles available on websites, books for future references etc. I use del.icio.us tagging.

7. I list the books I own at the LibraryThing – great way to never to buy a duplicate of the book you own.

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