Study Hacks Blog Decoding Patterns of Success

Citelighter Gives, I Give Back…

October 13th, 2011 · 7 comments

I don’t accept paid advertisements. I do, however, have a standing offer to write a short, honest post about a student-oriented product if the company is willing to donate to a charity of my choice. (See here for more details.)

Citelighter recently took me up on my offer by donating money to Bottom Line, a great Boston-based organization that helps more students get access to college. I spent a morning looking over the Citelighter product, and here’s what I liked…

  • I have a high threshold for integrating technology into my study processes because I find that most services are more trouble to setup and use than sticking with a simpler low-tech alternative. Citelighter is one of the few technologies that passes my threshold.
  • In short, it allows you to highlight any text you can view in your browser and then stores it along with the relevant citation. If it can’t find all of the information it needs for the citation, it asks you to fill in what’s missing. (Once anyone has filled in the missing information, however, everyone benefits.)
  • Must crucially, this works for Google Books (click the plain text link to get the text you’re viewing into a highlightable form).
  • When you’re done, you can export all the citations you found into whatever format you want. (Word, Google Docs, etc.)
  • Bottom line: I hate how much time goes into tracking down and formatting citations. For many students, this service will help.

This video explains things better than I can…

7 thoughts on “Citelighter Gives, I Give Back…

  1. Kyle says:

    Agreed, that’s especially helpful when doing research :D

  2. Roberta says:

    As a nurse hoping to publish this coming year, Citelighter will be extremely helpful – thanks for sharing and for your philanthropic attitude re: ads.

  3. Dustyn says:

    Zotero is hands down better than Citelighter. I have no official ties to them but I sing their praise everywhere because of how much easier they have made my research life.

  4. Andy says:

    Hi all!
    I thought that JabRef in conjunction with Lyx was weapon of choice for managing references and formatting papers. I have only used it a couple of times for lab reports. You can create “libraries” of references in JabRef that can be later cited when needed in Lyx. I haven’t tried using it in conjunction with Word.
    I must say that it is initially difficult to learn, but after you see all you can do with it is hard to go back to MS Word.
    Does anybody use something else for managing references, and writing much like Citelighter?

  5. Will Kwan says:

    A helpful tool indeed. As a student myself, I agree that most software aimed to assist students only complicates things further. It’s simple ones like these that actually work.

  6. Pamella says:

    It’s too bad there isn’t a Safari extension. Can you suggest another alternative that’s similar to Citelighter? Thanks!

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