The Daily Rituals of Some Well-known Creative People

I came across this interesting infographic on the Huffington Post (originally created by RJ Andrews of Info We Trust) that visualizes how some important creative and intellectual figures used to structure their days.  It seems that none of them spent any of their precious time on Facebook. ;)

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Papers 3: still disappointing

I was very optimistic about the most recent build of Papers 3. The company announced some change in file management (which I could not quite understand but decided that any change would be for the better). I have also found a way to search within the Papers3 package file (another post coming). So I finally decided to give it a full try by importing my Papers2 library and starting to write with help of Papers3. So far I am sorry to report significant disappointment and regret. The version is still too buggy. In particular, it consistently fails to rename files in accordance with the publication’s data and it also fails to display correct titles of publications in the list. In addition I spent some 30 minutes trying to add eight authors to a book chapter (the app kept erasing all data). Frustrating.


Posted in Bibliographies | Tagged | 29 Comments

Tags or folders? Depends on the file.

The  introduction of tags in the latest Mac OS has re-ignited the debate on tags vs. folders (e.g. in Mac Power Users episodes 172 and 167). For the last three years, I have consistently used folders for project files and tags for reference files in academic work:

project and reference files Continue reading

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Papers 3 is here

Papers 3 have just graduated from the beta version! Here is a couple of first quick impressions. There is a change in handling of files, which many people intensely discuss here and which is a make-or-break feature for a pdf manager. In the beta versions of Papers 3 the files in the library were virtually not accessible. Papers 3 Preferences now assure the user that the files in the library are accessible through Finder:

Library___and_Papers Continue reading

Posted in Bibliographies | Tagged | 56 Comments

Smooth transition from OpenMeta to Mavericks Tags

I was not the only one initially confused about OpenMeta and Mavericks tags. In the latest Macpowerusers,  David Sparks asks Brett Terpstra what is the difference. It turns out OpenMeta and Mavericks tags are the same thing.

I  figured this out as over the last few weeks my OpenMeta tasks have gradually and magically become Mavericks tags with no action on my part. Thus, several years I have spent tagging my reference files are not lost! Brett thinks in five years hierarchical folders will be all but gone from personal computers, replaced by tags. I am trying to prepare.

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Typography for writing focus and reading flow

Typography affects writing as much as it affects reading.  Yet paradoxically, the fonts that help me to write are not always those that are best for reading. For example, for email, I have recently discovered Avenir which practically forces composing short and clean email messages:


Continue reading

Posted in Writing | Tagged | 5 Comments

How reference managers could help is in our thinking process rather than just hold our libraries…

I must admit I don’t seem to be perfectly happy with what reference manager software have to offer. I am probably unjust and have high expectations. After all, they are ‘reference managers’ and in that sense they are already over-performing. Originally they were only intended to help scholars keep bibliographical data in one place (electronically) so that when they needed to add citations to their documents they be at hand rather than having to go through piles of print-outs to track down the sources. In that function they now fit very nicely (almost seamlessly) into the academic writing workflow. Is that simply their well-defined little niche? Or could they become more useful than that? Continue reading

Posted in Annotation, Bibliographies, Notes | Tagged , | 33 Comments