Webnotes is a valuable resource that allows you to annotate, track changes and view different version of the same webpage of research document. This can be incredibly useful for a student to organize and maintain research without requiring printing or storage capabilities. The other benefit is that students can take notes cleanly that would be legible to others. This would be a great communication tool to not only personalize notes but to share thoughts with others without physical interaction. However, the pitfall of webnotes is that it is web based, which means that it cannot be accessed without internet access. It is also prohibitively expensive for students and researchers at $300 per year for Platinum use, which allows for multiple user support.
Zotero also serves a similar function as Webnotes. However, the interface is built similar to Itunes as a research “library” and allows users to collect and collate information from the web. The benefit of Zotero is that it integrates with MS Word and preloads citations. It also allows for browsing and publishing for mobile devices. However, at the same time, when I try to log onto the documents that other users have collected, I’m prohibited without a login from the publisher. As a result, Zotero does not give me access to the same documents that I search for. This makes a lot of the research moot since I can’t access full text after collection.
Refworks is also a great resource that tracks and collects research. It collates author and descriptor indexes so I can search among my collection. I can also import references from other areas and format bibliographies quickly. At the same time, Refworks is limited by the number of export partners to be able to use their formatting efficiently. It also does not allow you to capture web pages like webnotes. It seems to be mainly manuscript and journal focused and as a result, papers with web based sources or in print may not be found or collected in the same collection.
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