I am terribly angry at EndNote and at myself for spending a lot of money in purchasing a software that is worse than a freeware like Mendeley.
I had been using Mendeley until now with absolutely no problems. I don’t even know why I, three days ago, decided to purchase EndNote X6 for my mac. On the same day I looked for help and only found this forum. But registration is a big turn off. We are your customers, why can’t we post anonymously? Why should we do through the hassle of registering, adding details, email, email confirmation, etc to give you information that will help you. I have no intention of being a regular member of this forum, unless your software is so completely buggy that without the help of developers it does not work on its own. But now, after a look of trouble in getting EndNote to behave properly, I am faced with something impossible to solve: an allergic reaction of EndNote to a specific Medical journal. (see attached video and description at the end of this post)
First of all, EN has a terrible appearance. Looks like a software from windows 95. It is slow and crashes every 15 minutes. Not to mention the way the window split in 300 different possibilities, none of which being as good as the new tab that Mendeley open to view and annotate PDFs. And when I use the option of directly searching into PubMed from EndNote, the search bar/fields never disappear when I go back to my local library. ARGH!
I tried importing the folder with all my PDFs (the way most people import references in the medical field) and obviously it crashes. I don’t even have that many… I think this specific folder had 196 pdfs of ˜10 pages each (medical papers). These are only the ones directly related to the paper I am writing.
It has no option to “watch” a folder for newly downloaded pdfs. This issue alone makes me want to give up EndNote altogether. Everyone know what a pain it is to import references from PubMed, so what is the problem is grabbing metadata from PDFs and with the DOI in hand, checking for the correct information?
Well, that seems impossible to do in batch. So I decided to export my entire library from Mendeley in Endnote XML format.
When trying to import into EndNote all the relative links to the PDFs were broken. Only way I managed to fix it was to manually rename the DATA folder to my NewLibrary.DATA folder.
Well, once they were all imported and the links to the PDFs were restored, I had to update some references because they had some “wrong” information. So EndNote has a nice feature called “CHECK FOR REFERENCE UPDATES”. Great!
But it works ONE BY ONE! ALL I WANTED WAS TO “UPDATE ALL FIELDS” IN ALL OF THEM. Not only that, the user has to click TWICE (once to update all fields and the second to save the changes for that reference). That was my saturday right there, updating references one by one. I know that in Social Sciences and other fields people do manually add references and edit each field. But in 2013 in medical/biological sciences, we don’t do that. With DOIs, online journals and PDFs with metadata, there must be an automatic way of doing things. Thats what we expect.
Ah, the best one: because I have PDFs which are supplementary data to some papers, there is no “reference update”, so EndNote would freeze/crash everytime such an entry was reached. Come on, there is no “timeout” for the online search for update? I seriously had to Force Quit EndNote 20-30 times to get my work done.
Then, after al of this was time to redo the citations in MS Word for Mac (2011 edition). They were already done with Mendeley, but I decided to redo them. An option for recognizing other software citation signatures would be good, but I know that is asking too much. I was ok manually deleting one, adding one.
But EN toolbar in Word sucks… Makes everything more difficult than it should be. The button for inserting a citation only allows a search string and to select citations from that search string. So if I want to add 3 citations, I have to use a search string that is guaranteed to come up with all three references and then pick them up from the windows of results. So, commonly, I had to click search. Look for the author name. Insert this citation. Then Word/EN reupdate everything (a few seconds). Then I click search again, look for another authors name. Insert citation. Word/EN reupdate everythingthing. And again and again. This drives anyone mad if they are inserting 4 or 5 citation in the same spot. For everyone’s sake, adopt the way Mendeley handles this. You can search, click, search, click, search, click, INSERT ALL. Than the updating takes place, and saves everyone’s time.
And, to finalize my 2 day experience with this software, EN X6 seems to be “allergic” to a specific journal. Namely, the Genetic in Medicine that is abbreviated Genet Med. EN accepts everything as the journal name, except Genet Med. When that happens, it changes to a full name that isnt even listed in the reference details. I recorded the screen to better explain this, otherwise people will think I am stupid or a liar.
Video of the issue http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3KSlQMXkR0&feature=youtu.be