[5.0 Beta] "My Publications" in Beta. Some UX thoughts.

edited February 12, 2017
So there is a library "My Publications" in the Beta. However, I can't add anything directly there, the "New Item" and " Add Item(s) by Identifier" buttons are not clickable in this library. However, I can create an item in my main Library, and then drag it into "My Publications". I then get asked if I am the author and have the rights to share etc. Nice. Since I can't create something inside "My Publications" I assumed that it adds a flag to publications I authored and the "My Publications" is a mere filter to only shows me the publications of my library where this flag is set.

However, it's not like that. I now have a copy of this item, one in "My Library" and another one in "My Publications". They don't have any connection and when I add more info to one of them, the other one does not have it. That's really not convenient and defeats the purpose of a database.

How is "My Publications" supposed to work?
  • Think of My Publications as an independent library that you maintain to populate the list of your publications on your profile page. You are right that the update to an item in your My Library will not show up for the same item in My Publications, but maybe a future version of Zotero will do just that. For now, you have to create the item in My Library and then drag-drop it to My Publications. You can share the full-text of your publications if you are authorized to and you want to.

    Here are some examples of what profile pages look for people who have items in their My Publications library:

    @inactinique and @LiborA, I took the liberty of sharing your profile pages :)
  • I just want to agree that this is a really annoying UX quirk. I really would like to not have many copies of my publications in my Zotero database (primarily to avoid duplicate citations in the word processor), so I would like to have the My Publications version be the only copy. As a result, adding items to My Publications currently requires:
    1. Adding/importing the item to another library
    2. Copying the item to My Publications
    3. Deleting the item from the first library
    4. Verifying that everyone worked as intended

    With many items (even with multi-item drag), this gets tedious. It also leads to lots of other annoying quirks. For example, I had made a Presentation item by editing a previous one that shared lots of metadata (conference name, date, etc.). I tried to add this to My Publications, but ran into the restriction on dragging the same item twice across libraries (even though the item no longer shared much of any metadata with its ostensible copy in My Publications).

    It would really be much easier to use if I could use the standard item creation methods (import, duplication, create new) in My Publications. Adding an item through these methods could still launch the My Publications wizard prompt (definitely for import, create new could happen after a user finishes editing the created item, same with duplication [perhaps the Title field of a duplicated item could be focused for editing to initiate that prompt?]).

    There have also been quit a few threads from confused users about how to use My Publications. A smoother UX would be really nice; at the least, a mouseover or popup prompt explaining how to add items to My Publications when a user tries to use the add item button or an import function would be good.
  • I agree on issues related to duplicate copies, one in your My Library and another in My Publications. Ideally, there should be a way to label items in My Library as "My Publication". Maybe through a fixed tag (that cannot be deleted or edited by user). Any item labelled this way will also show up in your online My Publications. For now, I am glad we have My Publications and hopeful issues will be sorted over time.
  • We've made some changes in the latest beta in response to the feedback here.
  • That's great. Thanks for the changes. I think it makes more sense now.
  • Oh, there is a vital function missing now. I want to be able to export a bibtex from "my publications" only. Before, I could right-click on it and export it. Now, right-click on "My Publications" will export the whole library. Please bring this function back.
  • It should probably be added back, but you can just go to my publications, select all (ctrl+a) in the middle panel --> right-click --> Export selected items.
  • Right. Figured that after posting. I can live with that, but having that function for all of the folders including the "My Publications" would probably be more consequential and intuitive UX wise.
  • edited April 25, 2017
    How can I change the sort order of the publications displayed on the website? I can't see any sort order in my list (https://www.zotero.org/bknorn).
  • @bknorn: The sort order can't currently be changed. What kind of sorting would you be interested in?
  • I think the most common sort order is according to the publication date (descending, i.e. starting with the most recent publication). That's what I would prefer as default as long as the sort order cannot be changed, because now it seems to be completely arbitrary (correct?). Thank you, @dstillman !
  • Agree, given this is a quasi-CV, sorting by descending dates of publication in each category makes perfect sense.
  • +1 to sorting by date of publication with latest on top. Also briefly mentioned here: https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/65299/5-0-beta-my-publications-probably-not-syncing-perfectly
  • We're going to tweak sorting so that publications are sorted by date. I've created a github issue to track this enhancement.
  • Great. Thanks!
  • Hello. I'm only now getting back to an issue I raised in January (https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/64110/my-publications-pdf-links-on-people-page#latest). I want to use Zotero Publications to post my research as a substitute for academia.edu. I want the pdfs that I attach to be downloadable from my profile (https://www.zotero.org/will_hanley). Currently, only the publications for which I've listed a url are linked, and the link leads to the journal page (and paywall). I would like for visitors to be able to download whatever pdfs I've attached to the items I've published.

    I understand that the problem may be happening because I sync My Library files using WebDAV. I've just removed and re-added my Publications according to the new method (described in the main 5.0 forum here https://forums.zotero.org/discussion/comment/274260/#Comment_274260) following an April update, but the results seem to be the same. Any thoughts?
  • It seems you done something wrong. All publication in Zotero 5 "My publication" subcollection are availalbe online on Zotero "drive" if they are marked as CC license. See https://www.zotero.org/libora. For example here is one of them https://files.zotero.net/1838472776/Ansorge et al. - 2016 - How truthful are water accounting data.pdf
    Check, if you use "My publication" created by Zoteor 5 (not subclection created by you)
    Check, if you mark it as availalbe online (the CC licence is in the Rights item)
  • Thanks, Libor. I changed the license to a CC license, but the pdf link still doesn't appear. I see that your pdfs do show even if you don't supply a url. I suppose it's because mine are stored on a webDAV?
  • Yes, you can't open anything on a WebDAV via the Zotero website (that'd be very tricky, if at all possible, to pull off: how would the Zotero website authenticate to your webDAV?)
  • Okay, that makes perfect sense to me now that I think about it, Adam. So I'll transfer my files to zotero storage and all should be well.
  • (And note that the value of the Rights field makes no difference in terms of whether the file is shared. All files added to My Publications are shared publicly as long as they're uploaded to zotero.org.)
  • Hello, any news on the possibility to sort my publications by year when exporting?
  • edited November 6, 2018
    @kalder Just sort by the year column in Zotero first before exporting or generating your (numbered or note-style) bibliography
  • Thanks, but it does not work.
    In fact, I am not exporting but rather generating a bibliography from the items in my publications. Even if I sort and then generate (to clipboard), the pasted bibliography is in alphabetical order.
  • edited November 6, 2018
    Okay, when you generate a bibliography, it sorts it according to the style’s requirements. The order in Zotero has no impact. If you are using APA style, use https://zotero.org/styles/apa-cv

    If you want another style, tell me which one and I can walk you through the (likely very simple) changes you will need to make to the style.
  • edited November 6, 2018
    @kalder Might not be exactly what you are doing, but just FYI, sort by "Year" is broken and only sorts on screen and does not sort when you create a report (right-click menu) . To sort chronologically, use "Date"
    Also discussed in this thread:

    If you are exporting, or select-drag to a rich text editor such as Word, then a group of items sorted by "Year" will actually show up sorted by "year" (I just tested that). The export is based on the style and in general, the sort order will hold true for numbered styles but change to alphabetical for author-date styles.
  • Bibliographies and Reports are different.
    For bibliographies, see bwiernik's post. The sort order is only determined by the citation style (as it should be).
    For reports, the link by gurdas is relevant, though I don't think kalder was asking about that.
  • Thanks to all.
    Like many others, I'd like to use my publications to include my publications in a CV. So the option is right click and create bibliography. Unfortunately, in a CV you would normally sort your works by year and not by alphabetical order (the main sorting criteria for most styles). I tried with Vancouver and it actually sort everythin by year, although it introduces a progressive number which should be deleted manually
  • Right, that's exactly the question bwiernik answered above:
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