DEVONthink for Scientists

I’ve just finished my praise for DT on my blog: … art-i.html

I’ll follow up a second part with science applications. If you have any experience with DT and academic life please feel free to share.

Here is the second and final part of my review of “Devonthink for Scientists” (especially physicists): … rt-ii.html

This part has some examples, hopefully helpful even for people here at the forum. Any suggestions are welcome.

Hi, physicistjedi

I use DT to collect maths abstracts on DT is great for that. My database is growing rapidly. I also use DT to backup my papers written with TeXshop (before making a change, I copy the source in DT as a plain text file). Do you have any idea about possible interactions between DT and TeXshop?


Hi, physicistjedi:

I remain excited about DT/DT Pro for the same reasons, as I have to deal with literature spanning numerous scientific, technical and public policy disciplines, i.e., environmental science and technology. The ability to discover connections between diverse disciplines, such as the literature of environmental sampling, testing and analysis; toxicology; health effects including clinical studies; and policy assessments of environmental legislation and regulations can be very exciting.

Of course, it remains the responsibility of the user to understand the literature and to evaluate the validity of such suggested connections. DEVONthink Pro has no training as a chemist, molecular biologist, toxicologist or public policy analyst. Nevertheless, I sometimes feel that I’ve got a whole team of research assistants working with me.

Note: I don’t find it necessary to ‘fragment’ my database documents into small chunks. The documents in my collections range in size from abstracts to book-length.


To Alb:
My TeX files are currently outside DT. When something finishes I just put the PDF inside. If you want to put TeX files to DT, probably the best way is the trivial one: using “Open With” for TeXshop. But may be I should think of a better way before I start to write a big TeX file like my thesis. Probably what I would do is to write it in DT in small chunks to be able to press “See Also” often and copy-paste to TeXshop in every few pages.
Does anyone has a better idea?

To Bill:
Thanks for sharing your experiences. I just keep big, bulk databases outside like the hep-th I told in my blog. My experience is that whenever I write something about physics, some hep-th papers appear and saturate my results. I feel better when I work with my own notes and collected quotations in my personal database and goto hep-th when I need literature search. Though it would be nice have them both open and switch between “See Also” results easily. Fingers crossed for 2.0 :slight_smile:


I’ m using Butler to make DTPro and TexShop work together. The sources are stored as plaintext files in DTPro. I open the most recent source using TeXShop. The resulting window will not let TeXShop Typeset, nor edit it. So I have configured a first button in Butler that will copy the content of the window inside a true TeXShop file, and save it on my desktop. A second button will “typeset and save the source to DTPro”. In this way, I can keep in DTPro a complete history of the changes I have made, and use TeXShop as an external editor.

(For the moment, I have no idea how to avoid copying the TeXShop source from DT to the desktop before working on it.)

If the finder had to possibility to locate files in the DT database, we could assemble smaller parts of a paper (chapters, or paragraphs) into a main document (using \input…). We could then store all our Texshop macros, and references inside DTPro :smiley:
Maybe a future release of DTPro will do that?