Mason’s Zotero Research Software Bundled in Web Browser Package

Posted: September 20, 2007 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Tara Laskowski

Easy-to-use research software developed at Mason is being packaged in Mozilla’s new, free Firefox Campus Edition this fall.

Introduced last year as open-source software that works within the popular Firefox web browser, Zotero has been downloaded more than 200,000 times. It is also changing the way research is stored, shared and organized digitally — improving the way anyone from a high school student to a world-renowned scholar does work.

“Using a simple, iTunes-like interface and the ability to intelligently scan online sources, Zotero is bringing web research to where it should be,” says Dan Cohen, research projects director for the Center of History and New Media where Zotero was developed.

With a name loosely based on an Albanian word meaning “to acquire, to master,” Zotero stores references and notes in the same way that other citation managers, such as EndNote, do. However, what makes Zotero different from other similar tools is that it works in the web browser, allowing it to sense, record and share scholarly information on the web.

The program also allows storage space for PDF files, images, links and entire web pages. Other features of the software include

  • The ability to export formatted citations to a paper, article, book or web site
  • A modern interface that simplifies all research tasks with features such as autosaving notes
  • The ability to share and exchange information with other scholars

The bundled version of Firefox — available for free download at — is geared toward students and provides easy access to music, timesaving research tools and highly rated web sites.

In addition to Zotero, Firefox Campus Edition includes the Firefox 2 web browser; FoxyTunes, a music application that controls almost any media player and easily finds lyrics, covers, videos and bios; and StumbleUpon, which allows users to channel-surf the Internet to find web sites, videos and photos based on their interests.

“Firefox Campus Edition is a great way for students to start enjoying a customized web experience,” says Paul Kim, vice president of marketing for Mozilla. “We’re excited to partner with innovative add-on developers like StumbleUpon, FoxyTunes and Zotero to introduce students to Firefox add-ons.”

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