A unique combination of cool features in a single tool makes your multitasking life easier - digi-libris

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A unique combination of cool features in a single tool makes your multitasking life easier

The following 12 functions combined in this single tool make digi-libris Reader unique as an organizer of your personal knowledge base and may well constitute a good reason for you to download and try it.
Digi-libris Reader is easy to use: To add a file or a web link and quickly re-find the information again in the mass of material accumulated over time simply, just drag and drop it onto the main screen. [demo] No files are actually moved or modified, they are just added to the digi-libris data base and the results of the editing functions described below are only recorded in this data base.
Of course digi-libris Reader includes many more features that are designed to facilitate your work on the computer. See the complete list here.
Metadata handling and display
digi-libris Reader is a non-tech personal organization tool for today’s multitasking user who works and lives in a digital world. This is metadata centric software for the automatic organization of your own catalogue or searchable collection of things.
  • extracts metadata from incoming or dropped files and links and classifies these automatically (provided they include meaningful embedded metadata, otherwise you can add these by hand).
  • metadata can be added and modified and used for other operations such as knowledge sharing, exporting, printing of library cards and generation of citations
  • mix documents and data sets of any type, photos, music, videos and web links in a single list for a more complete overview
  • visual reminder displays the most important attributes in the side bar for each item when you hover over it with the mouse
  • physical or virtual items can be added manually.
Navigation tool for collections of documents, ideas and things
The ability to extract and display metadata from incoming files make digi-libris reader the ideal navigation tool for browsing entire collections of documents that are distributed by a content provider as new documents can always be added without the need to re-index the whole collection.

This automation, however, requires that documents be ‘well-behaved’, i.e. they must, above all, be search friendly and easy to classify and to find again thanks to meaningful embedded metadata and they should also be user friendly and easy to navigate with bookmarks and an interactive table of contents.
digi-libris was the first to introduce this concept because users should be able to
  • discover information easily on the Internet or in a collection of documents sent by a content provider:
  • locate information again rapidly in their systems
  • jump quickly to passages of interest
  • add their own notes and comments
  • cite them correctly.
Consequently digi-libris Reader is optimized for parsing and automatically classifying such files and offers several possibilities for embedding metadata in PDF and EPUB files.
Content providers, on the other hand, can distribute digi-libris Reader free of charge to their readers, students or members as a navigation tool for the documents they plan to give out and there are possibilities for them to add their own topics lists and to personalize the program graphically to make it even more specific to their organization.
Export and sharing of any kind of data together with its metadata
Digi-libris offers three methods to share data with others:
  1. Sharing via a common folder (or cloud). Advantage: Exchange is fully automatic.
  2. Sharing via eMail. Advantage: Multiple recipients without digi-libris.
  3. using the dMeta file format. Advantage: The dMeta file format is more universal in that it produces bundles of data (of any kind) and corresponding metadata in the widely accepted XMP format into a single compressed file.

In each of these three cases you can decide exactly which piece of data to share.
Sharing files and data sets together with their metadata if metadata cannot be embedded
dMeta is a new file format developed by digi-libris for the exchange of data. Any file can be coupled and transmitted together with its descriptive and citation-relevant metadata. Research data and support notes that are not normally included in a paper, but required by Open Access can thus be permanently associated.
dMeta stands for Data plus Metadata Zip-package which are files with the ending *.dMeta or *.dpmz or even only *.zip. [Demo]
They are simply assemblies of electronic files of any kind tied firmly together with their corresponding metadata. Such a package may contain multiple pairs of data and metadata sets and even single metadata files containing virtual items or links to an external resource.
Citation generation with generic and CSL styles
Citing resources is becoming more and more relevant in view of rising academic pressures to publish and proper referencing plays an important role in scholarly communication, but each publication prescribes its own citation style format.
This can be most burdensome if done manually, particularly if you have to deal with multiple journals or publishers.
In digi-libris Reader you can develop citations and bibliographic references using one of the generic style options (Author + Date being the most common one) or you can download a CSL (Citation Language Style) style sheet from a publisher or other repository and format the citation output exactly as required by the various publishers.

The citations and bibliographic references you generate rely on existing metadata. In the case of CSL styles you are prompted to complete the missing ones. The program also includes some bridges for other citation formats which you can download from library and publisher sites.
Notepad with annotation manager
The notepad function of digi-libris facilitates knowledge management and is designed to boost productivity when you collect lots of documents, data sets and multimedia content for a paper you plan to write.

It lets you create and edit formatted notes that can be associated with one or more documents or treated as independent objects.
In the latter case these notes appear in the main list just like other documents where you can add metadata and thus make it searchable. To easily recognize your notes again when hovering with the mouse over your list, you'll see the first sentences of the text displayed in the side bar.

The annotation manager lets you create categories and assign bookmarks for easy re-finding. All notes are now also listed under the topic "private notes" and they can be exported in rich text format for further use in a commercial word processing program or they can be copied and pasted directly into your work and preserve the formatting (although you may have to assign an appropriate style).
Extracting metadata from unstructured text
Can digi-libris automatically extract metadata from not so 'well-behaved' documents and unstructured text? 
The question comes up often as there seems to be a need for it.  Like all other programs that pretend being able to do so, it can’t. We have tried several applications and machine learning and semantic analysis utilities and not one of them came back with reliable results. The search for title, authors, descriptions and keywords yielded results between 0% and 40%. But they also found a lot of gibberish that required sorting out.
For this reason we have included a new feature in digi-libris that greatly facilitates this task and saves you a lot of time. Since you have to open the document anyhow to verify, you simply highlight a word or group of words, hit CTRL-C or z-C, it appears instantly in digi-libris and all you have to do is select the corresponding attribute.
This is probably the most comfortable and fastest method of reliably assigning metadata to documents for classification purposes.
Watch folder for incoming files
You can set watch folders or directories that are being monitored in real time and any file added will automatically be parsed, indexed and included in the list. Two types watch folders can be defined:
  1. Share folder on the LAN or in the cloud where you exchange files or any other data plus attachments and metadata with other digi-libris Reader users
  2. Dropdown folder on your hard disk or in the cloud where you save downloaded files and remote links
Supports the Exif tool for metadata extraction from multimedia files
digi-libris supports Phil Harveys excellent Exif tool for parsing files containing metadata.
With the Exif tool metadata can be extracted from many different file formats which is particularly useful if your collection mix also contains multimedia files such as sound recordings, videos or images (other than .mp3 and .jpg).
Another advantage is that you can preview the raw metadata in greater granularity and decide whether you want to add a file to your collection or not and which metadata to import.

The Exif tool is not part of the digi-libris distribution but since it is a free command-line utility, it can be downloaded from several sources including directly from http://www.sno.phy.queensu.ca/~phil/exiftool/.
Installation instructions are included in the digi-libris help file.
Proprietary Topics and Keywords lists
Organizations who distribute libraries (whole collections of documents) should make extensive use of this feature and develop topics lists specific to their work and content because topics lists also make instant tables of contents. The same goes for the keywords list.
A generic list of topics in five languages is shipped with digi-libris Reader which you can view (in the currently selected language) under ‘Topics’ in the metadata input mask. It is recommended that assign one or more topics to each file or object to ensure they are classified correctly and appear in the right place in the topics window.

Topics are stored in the database by number and not as text in order to be applicable to any language that is available in multilingual topics list shipped by a content provider. Topics you defined yourselves and export, share or embed as metadata in files are stored by number and as clear text so that others can read them even if they use no or a different topics list without having to look them up in an online namespace reference.
Topics you have created yourselves may be difficult for others to understand for lack of a translation for which reason it is recommended that new topics be created in English or also in English.
The persistent keywords list lets you keep track of frequently used keywords, import keywords from current object(s), add keywords to one or all selected objects in one go and convert keywords to topics  (to build up your private topics list).
Metadata variable names displayed in local languages
digi-libris Reader can display metadata variable names in local languages to help all users who may only partially or not at all be familiar with the English language to understand the metadata that comes embedded or attached with downloaded documents or data.

This concerns all variables mapped to Dublin Core and CSL-citations as well as common multimedia variables and thus covers the typical mixed bag of items the typical student or end-user would download. While metadata variables are still recorded internally and shared (as XMP sidecar file) in English for international compatibility, the display on screen and print-outs of library cards are in selected local languages.

So far there are only translations in French, German, Spanish, Russian, Italian and Swedish available, but since this is a crowd-sourced endeavour, we hope that people with other language skills will help us enlarge the number of languages that can be displayed (google-translate gets it about 75% right, the other variables may need editing).
If interested please contact hotline@digi-libris.com
Project,  organization by...
People who regularly work on more than one project at the same time can define as many as 99 different projects in which they only keep a selection of files, links and other data.
Project view replaces the favourites view and lets you easily switch between projects.
Note that all entries exist only once in the database, but items can appear in more than one project. Thus when you change the metadata of an item in a project, the data base record of that item is modified and consequently will be visible thereafter in the main list and in all other project views.
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