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Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-03-04 23:29
by Dav-o
System information: [ Citavi Version 4.5, Windows 7, English, Other browser, MS Office 2010 64Bit, Acrobat XI ]

Import to Citavi from Evernote.

Hi all, i am new to Citavi and am finding it great. i am need a way to bring ALL entries from Evernote into Citavi. I have seen (on this forum), that there is a work-around for .pdfs, but what about all other records?

I have seen that the title and tags can be done - ... g-awesome/ but this does not also export the body text which is, you know, critical.

After considerable trawling, it looks like the way MAY be to export from Evernote as .html and then try to create a parser to read the .html and convert to .csv, that i could open in Excel that i could then open with Citavi. But, apart from being eye-wateringly time consuming and painful, is likely to not be reliable.

Someone else MUST have been down this path before. Any thoughts greatfully recieved.



Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-03-06 11:56
by Jennifer Schultz
Hi Dav-o,

Thank you very much for your question! It prompted us to take another look at the Evernote XML export format. While it's likely possible for us to create a filter that would import the title, tags, and note text, we weren't exactly sure what you would expect as an outcome in Citavi. Likely you sometimes have multiple notes that come from one source, right? Would you want Citavi to create one reference for each notebook containing the notes as quotations? Or should each note be added as an individual reference and the note text added as a quotation?

I guess I'm just having a hard time imagining how you would go from Evernote to Citavi, since I think of Evernote as a place to collect anything and everything: shopping lists, foreign language vocabulary lists, images, web pages, etc. It would help us a great deal if we could hear a little bit more about how you currently use Evernote and how you envision working with your Evernote notes in Citavi.

Many thanks in advance!

Best regards,

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-05-08 13:12
by Anna34
Let me bring up this issue again after a day spent in desperate attempts to find a workflow with reading on my Android tablet and producing knowledge items. Hopeless so far.

The Evernote workflow I am thinking about is roughly this:

1) I read and make Evernotes of what I am reading on my tablet. As I read, I make Evernotes with tags and titles in one specific just-for-syncing-notebook. Ideally, I would be able to set up different notebooks to sync automatically with different Citavi projects.
2) Using the currently non-existing import filter from Evernote, I have my notes imported with tags and titles already assigned. They would come in a special "inbox" category of Citavi outliner.
3) And from there I would drag and drop them to where I would want them to go in my actual outline. The tags are already there, which also helps me to remember what that note was about and where it should go.

Jennifer, you are right that Evernote is more like a place to collect everything - but it is precisely the multiple collection options that Citavi is lacking at the moment. Evernote works everywhere, there are tons of pickers for all browsers and devices. It does support tags, notes (including images), and note titles.
An import filter from Citavi would enable SO many people to do the reading where it is convenient, and then relatively quickly have it all in Citavi!

Two alternative workflows I was able to come up with are these:

External pdf reader workflow

1) use any decent pdf reader on the tablet, make highlights and comments, sync pdf files with Dropbox and then import highlights into Citavi.

This sounds good, but there are two problems here:
* Citavi does not seem to be aware of anything other than highlights, which makes any critical reading with one's own comments impossible.
* There is no way to batch import highlights (although they are all clearly in the "direct quotation" category). True, we would need to go and assign tags manually to each of them, but importing each highlight individually is too much of extra clicks.

Workflow with importing of text files with tags and notes

1) read and annotate in any pdf reader that supports notes. enter the tag as the note to the highlight.
2) export comment summary to a text file with a reader that can do it (Pdf X-change viewer, for instance)
3) depending on the exported file format, write a script to clean it up, leaving only tags and notes, in csv or tab-separated format.
4) import this file into Citavi (a dedicated "inbox" section would be welcome)

Am I missing something? The importing of notes in plain text files is soooo basic that it should be possible, it seems...

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-05-08 16:15
by Jennifer Schultz
Hi Anna34,

Thanks for your feedback and suggestions!

I like your idea of how importing from Evernote could work. I guess in this scenario each note would be imported as a quotation with the notebook being imported as a reference, since it sounds like you would want to use the notes in the Knowledge Organizer. Is this correct? I think this would make the most sense anyway, because then per notebook you'd only need to fill in the missing bibliographic information once in Citavi. This might require creating one notebook per source in Evernote, though. Is that a feasible way for Evernote users to work? I still have some general qualms about importing from Evernote, though, since I wonder how we would deal with output. I suppose most sources saved in Evernote are webpages, which would make their citation fairly unproblematic.

Concerning the external PDF reader workflow, the two features that you want (importing of other PDF annotations and comments and batch importing of highlights) might be something we add in the future. Of course, this depends on a mix of user demand, developer workload, and where the features fit in our overall development plan, so I can't promise anything. I will add your comments to the current wish list entries, though. These do get looked at by our development team when we plan future updates and versions of Citavi.

It is currently possible to import files in csv or tab-separated format, but only as references. I think the importing of text files might be problematic in that it involves an export, a clean up with a macro, and then an import into Citavi. I'm just not sure how good the results would be, it seems like the process would be a bit clunky, and you'd also lose the link to the exact point in the text to which the note refers. The PDF reader workflow you describe would be the way we'd likely choose.

You also mentioned having an "inbox" in Citavi. I guess this would be similar to our new Import groups, which let you view your recent imports.

Thanks again for taking the time to share your feedback with us! It's extremely valuable for us to hear how our users want Citavi to work with other tools and it helps us plan future versions.

Best regards,

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-05-09 01:49
by Anna34
The Import groups are not exactly the "inbox" I envisage, because I am thinking about new knowledge items (unassigned to categories, maybe even untagged) rather than new references. Docear handles it in a similar way, automatically extracting NEW annotations from all pdfs in a certain folder (i.e. ones that are not already assigned to some category in a project). Then all a user has to do is the actual tagging and putting things in the right places.

The macro clean-up would surely be clunky, but not so terrible for users with a bit of computer knowledge (which most researchers are) - and the fastest for Citavi team to implement. Besides, having such an option would also enable users to just make their notes in a plain text file with "tag [tab] note" format, which is doable on any device by any non-tech-savy person. They would automatically go in the "no category" category in Citavy, and we would only have to go over them and asssign them to categories. Hopefully it would also be possible to batch assign imported notes to a single reference. We would lose the exact location of the quotation in text, of course, but... supposing we do need to find that place again, this is what search is for!

The Evernote workflow with one reference per notebook is quite a good idea. I am not thinking about making clipped webpages into Citavi knowledge items; just the individual notes that people copy-paste from what they are reading as they go. In that case, Citavi could just prompt for the bibliographic information when importing a given notebook.

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2015-05-12 16:10
by Jennifer Schultz
Hello Anna34,

Thanks for the additional clarification and examples! I've added them to the corresponding wishlist entries. Any features in this direction will very likely have to be in a future version, even the text import, unfortunately, since we have some large development priorities alread for the near future. Thanks so much, though, for really thinking about how this could work in Citavi! Your comments will be very valuable as we begin planning for future versions.

Best regards,

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2017-01-16 23:32
by Dav-o
Hi all,

a quick 'bump' for this topic/request.
+1 to ALL of @Anna34's thoughtful and considered ideas and suggestions regarding workflow + function.
is there any progress from Citavi dev.s on this one?



Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2017-01-17 15:41
by Jennifer Schultz
Hi Dav-O,

Thanks for checking in with us! Unfortunately, there's been no progress on any of of these import and workflow improvements, as our developers are currently focusing on Citavi 6 and Citavi Web. I also would love to see an Evernote import, though. Fortunately, a very basic import of notebooks as references and individual notes as quotations should be possible from a technical perspective according to our import/export developer. At the moment, the limitation is time, so once Citavi 6 and Citavi Web have been launched, we should hopefully be able to add an import option for very basic Evernote content.

Although comments from external PDF readers still cannot be imported and added as knowledge items yet, you can at least view all annotations made in an external reader and see where the comments are located (even though you cannot read them) in the Citavi preview pane. I believe this was not possible at the time of Anna34's posts above.

Many thanks again for your patience!

Best regards,

Re: Evernote to Citavi

PostPosted: 2017-01-19 00:04
by Dav-o
Thanks for the reply. Great to know at least it's still on the horizon. i would only add that since my first request that Evernote has remained a very popular ref. collector. perhaps in-part due to it's many 'pickers' on lots of platforms.
i'll hope this issue makes it's way to the foreground v. soon!