In my opinion, EndNote X6 is a major step backward in ease of use. I have the following gripes and suggestions. A lot of them could be summarized as: Have an option to make X6 work exactly the way X5 did.
- EndNote Web used to be a useful connection. I could put up my references, and have access to them anywhere. Now, with “sync,” I cannot. Not only is sync all-or-nothing – I can’t put up just some of my references – I am force to put onlie all my attachments. Yet I am limited to 5GB of space. My attachments take up 8GB, so only some of my references can be online – and EndNote decides which ones! Suggestion: let me choose which attachments, if any, can be put on the website. (Note also that, since EndNote Web no longer can hold my references, EndNote for iPad is totally, doubly worthless.)
- EndNote X5 had a lot of customization available. I was able to, for example, not show the ratings, but show a button that would trigger the Import Reference dialog. Both choices have been eliminated. The views avaiable are not customizable (except choose view 1, 2, or 3), and none of them fits the way I work. Why can’t we have enough customization to make the main window usable?
- Whenever I start EndNote there is a large, four-line search dialog wasting the top part of my window. There is no way to prevent that dialog from appearing (with the possible, untried exception of using one of the view modes that is even less useful to me than the one I use). I suggest that each part of the window be optional so that we can set up EndNote to work the way we like. It is supposed to enhance our productivity, isn’t it?
- Some of the fixed responses don’t work they way I expect. For a while, every time I double-clicked on a reference that had an attachment, the attachment opened instead of letting me edit the reference. I got around this by choosing a view mode that includes a preview of the attachment, then making that window small to avoid too much wastage of space. But now if I want to open an attachment, I have to scroll through the reference until I get to the attachment field. I suggest that, if you double-click on the name of a reference, the reference opens for editing, but if you double-click on the paper clip indicating an attachment, the attachment opens.
- Speaking of opening attachments, how about a setting that lets you decide whether you want the attachments to open in their native program or in the EndNote preview window?
- What’s with this new, distracting bolding of the references until they’re “read”? Please give us the option to turn that off. It’s another timewaster.
Those are my big six. I’d really rather stay with version X5, but I’ve been told there are issues with that version on MacOS 10.8 using Word 2011. For the first time in a decade, I’m looking at other reference maintenance programs. I had bragged about EndNote so much (version X5) that my brother-in-law tried it (version X6). He told me it was far too difficult to use, and instead uses Zotero, which I avoid because it requires Firefox as your browser. Nonetheless, he was right when he told me that EndNote version X6 feels like early beta software. My biggest recommendation is that EndNote find a way to feel like release software instead.