Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Thing 18: Zotero

I used Zotero in 2008 for the Haddon Library's Alumni Weekend presentation about the maverick anthropologist William Blandowski. My hope was that Zotero would be a kind of cross between LibraryThing and Delicious, enabling me to access the material from anywhere. In 2008, the discovery that I had to download Zotero machine by machine, and could use it only with Firefox, was enough to deter me from exploring it further, and I didn't use it for the next presentation we laid on.

Two years on, returning to Zotero as an exercise for 23things, I'm interested, on the one hand, to read how The Passion and the Fury chose Zotero over Delicious for precisely the reasons that led me to the opposite choice; and, on the other hand, to read of Zotero File Storage ("a cloud-based storage solution for PDFs, images, web snapshots, and any other files"), which sounds like what I was looking for in 2008. I have downloaded the citation plugin, with mixed success. The attempt to do so for Open Office Writer, my preferred word-processor, led to a cycle of error messages and restarts for both Open Office and Firefox. Explanations and advice will be welcome! I succeeded in installing the plugin for Word 2007, but I don't much use Word 2007, and I'd prefer not to have to reopen documents in it simply for the purpose of using Zotero.

I will think about adding Zotero to Firefox in the Haddon's public computers. I have, if not exactly recommended it, then emailed a colleague in the following terms:

"The full menu for the 23things course is at http://bit.ly/btHjK2 . You will see that the referencing tools Zotero and Mendeley, which I've not used much but which seem to touch on the needs you mentioned yesterday, are up for next week!"


  1. for Ooo plugin trouble see here
    and if that doesn't help, post on the Zotero forums.

  2. I'm having the same openoffice error problems, off to try that link, thanks!

  3. Thanks, Latinamericanist, for the leads. I tried the first one and can see I need to escalate to a posting on the Zotero forums, as you say; I will do that some time in the next few days.