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Comment Re:Go back in time 5 years (Score 1) 581

The things I've seen about 'design flaws' have usually been about it being counter to the unix tradition of small programs doing one thing and one thing well, which only ever was true for small cli programs used to manipulate strings of text. It's not so much a proper neckbeard criticism, just some regurgitated nonsense that people will repeat because they've seen it modded to +5, insightful, and repetition is after all the surest way to seem insightful.

Broken shit is to be expected from software. Hopefully most of it gets fixed sooner now that so many have to use it.

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 327

Bullshit. Any pre-64 bit Intel laptop from Apple had a lifespan of 5 years before it was forced into obsolescence by an arbitrary OS X cut-off. These days, support go all the way back to the first 64 bit laptops (2008), but it's still far too early to tell whether they last twice as long as alternatives.

Comment Re:When is something well-known enough to not cite (Score 1) 81

Hm, maybe I live is a web search world, but I never found myself wishing for that kind of thing. It tended to be I'd read a paper finding it through web searches, on the website of a researcher I knew to be be important in the field, or cited elsewhere.

But that's just not practical when you want a current overview of a huge field. With EndNote, you typically dump the entire list of search results from the database, and then start reading abstracts (included in the reference file), sorting relevant from irrelevant, and then download PDFs to read (which are then stored along with the references). It's a research tool and a retrieval tool. BibTeX isn't.

Comment Re:When is something well-known enough to not cite (Score 1) 81

How do you mean? Is this for some sort of display purpose other than in the bibliography of the paper? BibTeX is mostly just the database and tools for turning that plus a document into a bibliography. Beyond that it doesn't do any "management".

Exactly. The ability to view the database, sorted in any order imaginable, or ordered into groups, either manually or through live searches. It's a very useful tool when writing a review with hundreds or references, and is nice to have even if you've got just a few dozens.

Comment Re:When is something well-known enough to not cite (Score 1) 81

Yeah, BibTeX is more reliable than EndNote, but it's cumbersome to use and extremely poor at, well, managing references. Perhaps there are frontends with dupe control, sorting by arbitrary fields, grouping, etc., but then you're into the old Unix problem of having the choice of a gazillion applications that do one thing each, usually poorly, and with different combinations everywhere. A monstrosity like EndNote does pretty much everything you can want from a reference manager (much of it in a confusing manner, granted), which means you can get help: it's the same everywhere.

BibTeX might have most styles you can think of -- in English. When I last used it, I had to hack my own, not something I would recommend to your average researcher. Keep in mind that most of them are quite poor with computers. Asking them to use LaTeX is like asking Unix programmers to think of the end user: it's neither relevant to them, nor helpful.

Comment Re:When is something well-known enough to not cite (Score 2) 81

Typesetting isn't a process computers excel at. LaTeX is good, but not nearly as good as a good designer equipped with InDesign and loads and loads of time. It's faster and cheaper, yes, and certainly good enough for most academic journals (probably not Nature). Unfortunately, it also offers nothing (except decent typesetting) for fields that don't deal much with maths, whereas Microsoft Word offers a few nice tools, is somewhat easy to use, and has rubbish typesetting.

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