Page Numbers

I have only been using (and loving) Zotero for a few days, so please bear with me if the question seems ridiculously simple.

I have been building a library (about 70 books, now) and it suddenly occurred to me that the specific page number of my citation is not listed in my 'Info'.

In fact, I'm not even sure where to add it manually(?) Please help! Thanks...
  • specific page numbers are manually insterted through the word plug-in. If you want to remember a particular page number in a book, I suggest using a note - presumably you can have several imporant passages in one book - you obviously shouldn't have separate Zotero items for each of them.
  • thanks for your help, adam.

    the thing is, i am writing my dissertation on google docs, not word... in any case, you answered my question: i will need to write them manually.

    thanks again!
  • I was wondering the same thing with Google books. I would prefer not to have to manually insert the page number of the book I am reviewing as a note in Zotero. It seems to me that it shouldn't be too difficult for Zotero to grab the specific page number--the page number is in the URL--and automatically insert the page number when I paste the citation in writing (e.g., google docs)?

    (Regardless Zotero is still an awesome Firefox addon--my all time favorite.)
  • but that's just not the way a bibliography manager works. The whole point is that you would be able to cite the same item multiple times - including different pages of the same book as well as the book w/o a specific page. Saving a specific page of a book as an individual item would just create a huge pile of nearly identical items, impossible to manage.
  • edited August 5, 2011
    How about extending the note metadata (which already has a "Related" and "Tags" field) with a "Locator" field (offering a dropdown menu for the label and a freeform field for the locator value)? That way you can keep track of parts of works you want to cite (the word processor plugin would have to show the locator information next to the note title, and instead of citing the note, you would cite the parent item using the note's locator info).
  • I like that - as a long term idea I could see putting a quote in a child note - by selecting the childnote in the plugin, Zotero could automatically paste the quote and the citation with page #
  • a big me too for that, I currently have individual notes for each quotation I think I might need and start them uniformly with [p.0XX], which leaves me with quotes ordered as they appear in the book. If the extra step of re-writing the citation and then the p. number in Word could be removed, that would be brilliant.
  • Me too. This would be very useful.
  • Adding to the chorus of power users who want this-- me too! Now which one of us is going to go code-diving and introduce this?
  • edited August 7, 2011
    Seeing as this proposal seems to be quite popular, some additional thoughts:

    - csledit.xul (chrome://zotero/content/tools/csledit.xul) already shows how the locator selection dropdown could work. When used in the right-hand column, the locator terms ("Page", "Book", etc.) can be localized using the term definitions in the CSL locale files.
    - it might be handy if the locator information is prepended to the note title in the middle column, and that notes are sorted by a) locator term, b) locator value and c) note title, similar to what clio_13 already does with hand. E.g., the middle column could look like:

    Title of Parent item
    - [chapter 2] Important discussion about bread sticks
    - [page 14] Arguments in favor of fried ice cream
    - [page 58-59 ] Author likes apples better than pears
    - General note
    - Wholly different general note
  • @adamsmith: How long term is this type of inserting citations? I would really like to have better support for putting notes directly into Word via the plugin (and automatically getting the page number for the reference).
  • I don't know - I figure it's going to take quite while unless someone outside of core dev codes it.
  • It would be nice to have such a feature. While I understand that the primary use is for bibliographic reference, being able to have seperate page references (without using the notes) would extend the use of Zotero for me, making it a more efficient system for project management. I know that's not the intention, but it does pretty well as one already.
  • I'm a bit befuddled as to why this feature has been left out. When taking notes for writing a paper, it's essential to know what page of a resource you're taking notes on--when it comes time to cite it, you must have the page number! It seems obvious to me that there should be a field in each note's metadata for the pages of the work that the note refers to. And that field should be automatically used when inserting a citation.
  • and since everything is obvious to you, I'm sure it's obvious to you how to code this and obvious where to take the time to code it in which case - obviously - the open source Zotero project will gladly accept your patch.
  • I must say, such a rude reply does not behoove the Zotero project. Out of two forum posts I've made suggesting improvements, I've received two replies of the "submit a patch, genius" variety. 2 for 2.

    Here's a few things for you to think about:

    1. For those who wrote the code that already exists, it would be trivial to add another metadata field to notes. For someone unfamiliar with the codebase, it would take much time and effort just to get up to speed.

    2. The point of this forum is to ask for improvements. If such requests are unwelcome, it would be better to close the forum than to chase away those who make them. At least that would be honest. If the devs aren't willing to take suggestions, don't pretend to be. (Though I'm sure that wouldn't sit well with those who fund the project!)

    3. "Fix it yourself, idiot" and the like is never an acceptable response to a user. Try, "We'll consider it, thanks" or, "It's on the list--we'll get to it eventually," or, "Sorry, we're not interested in that feature--but we welcome patches."

    4. Keep up that attitude and you will give the Zotero project a bad name. There are plenty of other solutions I could use. Do you want Zotero to grow? Or are you an elitist, hoping to keep away the riffraff (as defined by you)? Academia has enough trouble with elitism already--I suggest Zotero do whatever it can to avoid it.

    5. Let's be good to one another, eh? I didn't attack you, adamsmith, so there's no need for you to get defensive.
  • edited December 7, 2011
    There's a difference between suggesting a feature/improvement (which is indeed what the forum is for - see e.g. what Rintze does above) - and complaining that something hasn't been done yet in an arrogant tone ("befuddled", "obvious" etc.).
    You'll consistently get the "then do it yourself, genius" reply for the second type of posts, and never for the first type.

    edit: Also, in your other thread, I did exactly what you suggested - add the problem to the known issues - and tried to explain why the solution you suggested wasn't practicable in that case. Nothing about "do it yourself genius" there.
  • I see the biggest obstacle here being storage and propagation of the metadata. A change like this has to happen in about 6 places: the note UI in Zotero, the local sqlite database, the sync protocol, the library view, and the server API. The interconnection here can really slow down progress at times.

    But I am interested in seeing this (as is adamsmith, another Zotero user and not an employee of CHNM and the project). This will probably have to be done by someone outside of the paid project staff, simply because Zotero only has 2 paid developers regularly working on it. Fortunately, a small group of community members has taken to writing new features, so there are now some additional people with the knowledge to make this happen (I'm almost one of them).
  • adamsmith, I wish you wouldn't assume that I intended an arrogant or insulting tone just because I said I was surprised that such a feature didn't already exist. I was simply emphasizing the importance of the idea.

    Written words lack facial expression, tone of voice, body language, etc. Lacking those cues, please don't assume the worst.
  • Hi everybody!
    Just in case anyone would like to know: I just need that field for pagenumbers too ;)

    I am not a programmer and do not now much about citation. For me just a field to enter the page number would do the job. I collect quotations from books as notes. I help myself by prepending something like "0045-0046 title of the quote" for the page number where I can find this quote.

  • Hi. To add the page number on a quote: after clicking in "insert citation" on Word, simply switch to "classic view", there is a field for page there. Regards.
  • that's actually much easier and doesn't require switching to the classic view:
    but people here are talking about an additional "page" field for notes.
  • Thank you for that link adam.
  • OK - I don't want to beat a dead horse here. I am not a code developer, but I have used several databases from the frontend and I have a VERY basic idea regarding algorithms. I have also used other citation managers extensively. I have the same page number request. Unfortunately, the learning curve needed for me to alter Zotero code would be too great for me to tackle.

    I discovered Zotero a few years ago and I have loved the look, feel, and functionality, however, I have continued to use Citation 9 to manage my bibliographic and notecard info for one reason - the ability to keep track of page numbers when I add a citation. The problem is that it doesn't appear that they make citation any longer - or at least it isn't supported.

    Maybe I am simply trying to use Zotero for something it wasn't designed, but when I am doing research I think of a citation manager as if it were an electronic (and smarter version) of the old 3x5 index card notes. I don't remember what page number information came from. Sure, I could add it in the note section, but if I choose to drag/drop the quote, then it adds the page number as well - requiring me to delete the page number and add it to the citation.

    I am in the process of starting back to grad school and it would be nice to have one repository for my readings.

    Any help will be appreciated.

  • edited June 7, 2013
    You might take a look at MLZ, an unofficial variant of Zotero with support for legal and multilingual referencing. I am not familiar with Citation 9, but if I understand your description correctly, MLZ offers similar functionality, documented in a small book I released recently ("Citations, Out of the Box") both as a PDF (free), and in paperback through Amazon (at a modest price).

    Details are here. See especially pages 19-20 & 32-33 (on compatibility with mainline Zotero), 28-29 (on getting help with MLZ) and 40-42 (on MLZ support for citing directly from 3x5-card-style Notes with page numbers).
  • I would also love to see a page number field as metadata for notes. Until that arrives I will continue my current practice of typing "p. 001" (e.g.) as the fist line of my notes.
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