Skip to main content

Featured Post

Amazon's Black Friday Sale Begins: See What's On Offer

Amazon's Black Friday Sale is finally here. Here are some of the best deals on now.
We've had our fingers poised over our keyboards long enough in anticipation of Amazon's Black Friday Sale, which went live at midnight and will last until 25 November.

PDF Stacks review - organise PDFs into an email-like interface

Researchers, students, and others who need to work with multiple PDF documents, are always on the lookout for ways to make this formidable task easier. PDF Stacks is yet another contestant in the world of PDF managers, trying to being order into the chaos of your PDF library. Unlike similar solutions such as ReadCube, Utopia Documents, or Zotero, PDF Stacks is a $39 program, and doesn't have a free option except for a 15-day trial. It would fit well into an office, but it's hard to justify paying good money if you're a starving student. (See also: Foxit PhantomPDF 6 review).

The world of PDF organizers is split in two: Tools that help you bring order to your existing PDF library, and tools that help you research what's available online and find relevant articles. While PDF Stacks tries to fit into both categories, in reality it only belongs in the first, with online research abilities that have nothing much to offer over your ordinary browser window. See all software Reviews.

Upon launching the program for the first time, PDF Stacks will offer to scan your computer for PDFs. It will not, however, scan any connected external drives, or cloud storage folders such as Dropbox, so any PDFs stored there have to be added manually. Note that PDF Stacks creates an extra copy of any PDF you add to your library and stores it in its own, separate folder, so the more PDFs you add, the more space this folder is going to use.

PD Stacks will now attempt to recognize your PDFs and fill in the title, author, year, journal, volume, and issue columns. If successful, it will also pull up an abstract to be displayed on the right sidebar along with the title. If PDF Stacks fails to recognize your article, which happened with approximately 80% of my PDFs, it will only display the file's name in the title field, but if you have the patience, you can search for each article in Google Scholar or PubMed, and use the program's "Match" feature to match your PDF with its online info. You can also edit these fields manually.

The program's interface resembles an email program, with a list of articles on top, a preview pane at the bottom, and a list of folders on the left. To manage large quantities of PDFs, you can create collections, which are very much like folders, and sort your documents into them by dragging and dropping, or through the menus. Very much like email, you can mark PDFs as read or unread, or flag them to make them stick out of the list.

It's also easy to search through your collection: Simply start typing in the search box to find all relevant articles in your library. It's also possible to search for keywords only in titles, search for author names only, search for keywords in notes, etc. This is PDF Stack's strongest feature, making it possible to find specific articles or keywords with lightning speed.

According to the product's website, PDF Stacks can also be used as a primary PDF reader. The preview pane is indeed a convenient way to browse through your documents, and when it's time to focus on one, the "Open PDF" button will open it in a new tab. You can also hit "Fullscreen" for a more distraction-free reading environment. Unfortunately, the reader doesn't come with any useful annotation or highlighting tools to speak of. The only note-taking method available is a semi-transparent notes window, where you can jot down your general thoughts. There's no way to attach notes to a specific line, or to highlight parts of the article for any purpose. Any notes you make will appear in the right sidebar when browsing your files, and as mentioned earlier, you can easily search through them.

The PDF reader offers three other important options: Open URL, Email and Print. The Print and Open URL buttons worked as expected, although the Open URL feature wasn't available for most of my articles, but the Email option requires an installed email program in order to work, and Windows 8's Mail is not considered to be one. Being a Gmail Web user, I couldn't use this feature.

A look at the program's left sidebar reveals several useful categories. The authors category includes an alphabetized list of all the authors PDF Stacks has recognize from your articles. Clicking on an author reveals a list of every article by this author that resides in your library. There's a similar list for journals. Here you'll also find the Google Scholar and PubMed searches, where you can search for articles from within PDF Stacks. When you find an article you're interested in, you can import it into your library, but note that at this time it will only import the article's information, not a PDF. If you have a matching PDF, if you can attach it through the menus.See all software Reviews.

View the original article here


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

Amazon Echo Plus (Second-Gen) Review

The second-gen Amazon Echo Plus is shorter, louder and better-looking than ever. What's not to like? Here's our review.
Should I Buy The Amazon Echo Plus (2nd-gen)?
The new Echo Plus offers a radical redesign compared to the original, ditching the plastic body for a fabric mesh housing that helps the speaker blend into the home environment. It’s not only better-looking either, as a larger speaker and tweeter provide improved audio quality and Dolby Play 360 audio support helps fills the room with music. What’s not to like?

LG G5 Review In-Depth

Can LG take on the Galaxy S7 with a metal design, dual-cameras and an accessory slot? Here's our first LG G5 review, focusing on LG G5 design and build, LG G5 specs, LG G5 cameras and LG G5 software and apps.
Alongside the Galaxy S7, the LG G5 is one of the biggest phones (not literally) to launch in 2016 – and we're not just talking in the Android world. It's one of the heavyweights and LG will be looking to set the market alight with the G5's alternative and innovative modular design.

Xiaomi Mi Band 2 Review: The Best Cheap Fitness Tracker Money Can Buy

The Xiaomi Mi Band 2 is the best cheap fitness tracker we’ve seen. Read our Mi Band 2 review to find out what’s new in this excellent-value budget activity tracker.
Should I Buy The Xiaomi Mi Band 2?
With a new OLED screen the Xiaomi Mi Band 2 offers better value than ever. We’d like to see better integration with third-party apps, but at this price the Mi Band 2 is impossible to fault.

2019 BMW M5 Review

The 2019 BMW M5 sedan is a high-performance luxury car without compromise and few rivals.
The 2019 BMW M5 high-performance sedan gives us all of the feels.
The digital wizardry from the last generation is still there, but this year’s version integrates the human into the experience. It’s a better feeling super sedan on a super budget. For 2019, BMW added an M5 Competition version that bumps power output to 617 horsepower (up from 600 hp in the M5), bigger wheels and a handful of small performance tweaks. The M5 Competition starts at a rich $110,000, give or take, up from the M5’s asking price of more than $103,000.

Google Pixel Review

Not everyone wants a phone with a big screen, but most small-screen phones compromise on performance and cameras. Not so with Google’s latest flagship Android phone: Here’s our Google Pixel review.
Joining the ranks of the Pixel C and Chromebook Pixel are Google’s new Pixel phones. We’re reviewing the smaller 5in Pixel here, but you can read our separate Pixel XL review if you’re after a bigger phone.

Like Fan Page