First hand digital divide

Well, it is more of a digital challenge… or more so, i felt digitally challenged…. Tonight i submitted a paper to the 2008 ICA conference. Leaving aside all the factors that led me to working on it until the very last minute, i will jump straight to the 5 minutes prior to the submission deadline.

Recently I switched to Zotero as my primary citation manager. So far the program proved itself as very good. It is a fruit of academic project, it is free, integrated with Fire Fox, and has all the features that its commercial counterpart EndNote and even more. Just a few days ago Zotero released an update, which is normal and happens from time to time. However, there is apparently a bug or two…

It started when my computer froze as i was going over the citations. It froze to a degree that Task Manager would not react. With a clock ticking towards a submission deadline, this is the last thing you want to happen to you. But it didn’t end there. The highlight was when i generated the bibliography and realized that it is organized in the alphabetical order of titles(!!!). Now imagine me, a few minutes before the deadline, with something like 30 citations in practically random order. A quick search for the problem revealed that indeed there is something, but none of the proposed solutions really helped me. Eventually i did submit the paper, but only after rearranging the bibliography by hand.

The ironic part of it is that the paper i submitted (co-authored with Erik) is about digital divide. So, today i kind of experienced what it is when the technology turns against you at the moment you need it the most. Regardless, it would be much easier if it wasn’t at the last minute. But then, what would i post about? :)


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