Zotero best practices

I have tried this but maybe I did something wrong as it does not work for me.



Yea… I am also leaning towards software agnostic system. Convenience at the risk of losing resiliency is not the best tradeoff I now feel.

Ok. I am kinda stuck, I guess. I wish there’s a simple enough tutorial I can follow to be better organized.

I have taken a Big 5 before so I know I am bad at organizing a system. Tho I can follow a simple one enough. Hitting deadends is quite the bummer.

Have you tried by installing poppler as recommended here?

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Well it did say pdf.js is more popular. I will try poppler and then update here

I’m using wildcards to organize my library. I actually flattened my hierarchy a bit since I last posted. Here are my current settings for Zotfile:

  • PDFs for papers get organized by the last name of the first author:

  • I changed the renaming rule to include the citekey, instead of making it a subfolder. This means that my file will be renamed <citekey>-<title of paper> (you can see the example at the very top):

  • My Bibtex settings, in particular my citekey looks like this:

    What this means is that for a paper by John Doe, published in 2020 at the conference of Cool Zotero Settings (CZS), I’ll get a citekey like this: doe2020czs.

I’m using the citekey as title setting in mdnotes, so the filenames of all the files exported from include doe2020czs. I can then search my harddrive for doe2020czs, and all the files related to this paper will show up. In Obsidian, I try to follow the same naming convention.

This is just the way it works for me, but Zotfile offers a lot of flexibility depending on the wildcards that you use and work for you.


I brew install poppler and restarted zotero but still cannot choose poppler in Zotfile Preferences. So :man_shrugging:t2:


From the screenshot itself, I’m not sure what could be wrong. Sorry, I’m not on MacOS so I can’t really help you debug there since I don’t have much experience with what works there. Not sure what PDF viewer you are using to annotate, but Foxit reader messes it up in Linux. My suggestions would be:

  1. The standard have you tried restarting?
  2. Try the default PDF viewer if you haven’t already
  3. Submit a bug report/ask on the Zotero forums.

you could ask on Zotero community forum too

Thank you very much, I’ve already been surprised by a link in my reference folder (:

To ensure I use the APA’s 7th edition of referencing style, I tested some references. Then I looked at the differences between Obsidian APA and Zotero’s APA 7th edition, which both seem to use APA’s 6th edition template. Since I am (still) an utter noob with this stuff, I’d thought I’d better ask to be sure.

Does Obsidian APA use the APA’s 7 edition referencing style?

For the sake of learning, I tried to add the [[ ]] in Zotero’s APA 7th edition. The result, Obsidian apa7.css (68.3 KB), seems not to work. Could someone help me understand how to do this properly?

Thank you, @StoltHD, @argentum, @echej

This community is nice :slight_smile:

I think I will try to draw up diagrams to decide what kind of structure I want. That’s a good suggestion by Stolt

Already there are a few major sections I keep reusing, which are daily notes, papers/books, people, products, projects.

Hey Guys,

i have created a simple Zotero translator that creates a markdown link to your Zotero Item when quick copying (drag and droping) the item into obsidian.

That is wonderful. It works for pdf files, but does nothing when I drag&drop a web Item

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Hey @linuxule this looks great

can you point me in the right direction on how to set this up, thanks!

Check section “Get links to PDF” in this post Zotero best practices or jump directly to description Zotero best practices

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Np! basically you can just copy and paste the file into the “translators” folder within the Zotero directory.

On macos, it looks like “/username/Zotero/translators”

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Sometimes when I use the translator I was getting NaN for the year, even if the year is present in the metadata, for example:
Kosciessa. NaN. Standard multiscale entropy reflects neural dynamics at mismatched temporal scales: What’s signal irregularity got to do with it?

Now I replaced it with the latest translator from github and I am getting also day date Kosciessa. 11-May-2020. Standard multiscale entropy reflects neural dynamics at mismatched temporal scales: What’s signal irregularity got to do with it?

I filled issue on github too

EDIT: The issue was solved really fast <3

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Have a look at Bryan’s workflow “Comprehensive Obsidian & Zotero Workflow For Zettelkasten & Evergreen Notes :memo:

He is a great contributor to the community. :pray:


Hey thanks for the plug! :blush:


4 posts were split to a new topic: Is sliding panes a downloadable plugin?

I haven’t tried this, but I’d imagine you could use Pandoc citations and then use Pandoc coupled with bibtex references to generate fully referenced PDFs. Zotero can export bibtex files.

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