EndNote X2, Professional Citations in Pages ‘09

Thomson Reuters' EndNote X2 is a full-scale citation application that integrates with Microsoft Word and with Apple Pages '09. One look at the manual of EndNote X2 and you'll know this is serious software that enables students, scientists, legal professionals, M.D.'s, and educators to add footnotes and bibliographies like they are supposed to in their field of interest. The manual would also make you think this is hard to learn software, but that proved to be wrong. EndNote X2 has a huge number of options and features, though.EndNote X2 works close together with Pages ‘09. In fact, it’s just as closely integrated with Pages as it is with Word. There’s one major difference though: in Pages ‘09 I don’t get the plug-in error messages I do get when starting Word 2004 with the EndNote plug-in activated.

As soon as you select the “Insert EndNote Citation” option from the Insert menu, the “Cite as you Write” system comes into play and a chain of actions is started. First, EndNote is launched with the EndNote Find Citations panel the most prominently available. The EndNote citations library you set up as default (or the one that must be loaded when launching the application as set in the Preferences) will be made available.

It’s this library you will be searching through for citations in Pages ‘09. The whole process takes a while to describe, but the launch and the becoming available of the Find panel happens very fast, even on a five years old Power Mac G5.

In the Find Citations panel, you will type in the search pattern for the citation you’re trying to find. You’ll be given the chance to fine-tune the search by ruling out specific authors, for example. And then, when you’re satisfied with the list in the Find panel, you will select the title(s) you want to cite.

At that point, you will see a list of citations appear in Pages ‘09, and on a separate page at the very bottom of your document, a bibliography which lists the citations you selected.
Myriad ways to style your citation and bibliographyThe EndNote insertion in your Pages ‘09 document has a couple of tricks on up its sleeve by its own right. For example, when you double-click one of the items in the citations list, a variant on the Find panel will pop up and show you the full details of this item in your EndNote library. And double-clicking on a bibliography entry will do the same.

The Pages ‘09 integration does lack some of the more powerful features the Word integration has. Also, it seems that people who are usually working with Word and receive Pages documents, will end up with static citations and bibliographies, instead of the dynamic links that characterise the integration. Collaboration between Word and Pages users is not as easy as it seems.

Output styles are another issue that I found challenging. There are no less than sixty pages dedicated to the style of a citation in the EndNote manual, and believe me when I say that you’d better read through that chapter. The style of your citations is largely determined by EndNote and not by Pages.

If you don’t read the manual or at least the QuickStart tutorial, you’ll end up wondering why your citation never appears, or why it has been formatted in such strange ways. With the formatting of citations and bibliographies, I’ve come to the discussion of EndNote itself. And despite the massive manual, EndNote is not particularly difficult to use or grasp. The only problem with the application is the huge number of options and feature items it offers.

An example is the list of output styles exactly. There are no less than 3,000 individual bibliographic styles available. Most users will only touch a handful of those, but it is best to know how they work, because some styles work different in different countries. Take for example the legal styles available in EndNote X2. Styles are often tied to a publication, but in some European countries the legal professioan has agreed upon standard citation styles to be used across all legal publications in that country.

In order to get that style, you can start from one of the existing and then edit the style—and give it a new name—for your particular usage. It’s all very powerful and adapting EndNote X2 to your area of expertise is even not difficult to do, but the challenge is to find the exact menu or toolbar option to start.
Also, EndNote X2 offers users the ability to fine-tune the citations themselves, but some of that power is linked to the output channel—in this case, Word or Pages. If you’re using Pages, the capabilities are dramatically less powerful than when you’re using Word. Some of these limitations can be worked upon by the developer, but with some Pages users will have to live. With EndNote X2, it becomes clear Pages ‘09 is still a ‘young’ product for collaboration and heavy lifting in scientific (and white) paper and report processing.

EndNote X2 comes with a very large collection of online libraries and databases you can add references for citations and bibliographies from. All of these are free, but the list can be extended with paying online sources as well. And the online databases that come by default with the program all support direct searching for topics from within EndNote. However, some databases won’t allow you to do that and will send you a downloaded file containing the bibliography you requested.

EndNote is almost always listed as file format option on these sites. When it isn’t, a format that EndNote can import is always available. The online capabilities of EndNote X2 work both ways: with EndNote Web, you can easily share your citations and bibliographies with other people on the web.

Oh, and you can also add references in EndNote’s library by hand.

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