Synapsen is a digital card index or reference organizer (developed since 1996), which is to say a storage system on the basis of an electronic literature database that enables the management of bibliographies. However, in contrast to normal literature management software, synapsen offers a very distinct advantage: with catchwords entered by the user, the program connects individual cards automatically and creates not only a network of cards whose relation to each other might have been forgotten, but also creates completely unexpected connections and relations between individual entries. synapsen is therefore not only for electronic literature management, but also a helping hand when writing scientific texts, which participates in communication with the author in order to augment lines of argumentation and the generation of ideas.
The synapsen software is written in JAVA, it is housed on an internal SQL-database based in the literature networking structure from Niklas Luhmann, and other, e.g. Aby Warburg, Arno Schmidt, Hans Blumenberg.
»I’m sure I read that before. Where was it again?« is the common, always returning question of every reader, and this is the point where Synapsen takes its position. Not only researchers and students of the sciences that rely on the written word are able to recognise this classical problem which this card-catalog seeks to remedy: Forgetting. How is it possible in the framework of a (text-based) scientific report to position the researched, reformulated piles of knowledge to the extent that even years later it is something that you have at your disposal?
Synapsen is for literature management that is specifically different from market-softare like ask-sam, Lidos, LiMan, EndNote etc. Besides simply managing bibliographic data, Synapsen also creates an information-architecture that grants the card-catalog the role of an author. Every dataset, which contains not only the bibliographic information pertaining to a text but also complete literature reports, is characterized by a list of catchwords. These are added by the user during the data-entry stage of a card. With the assistance of thorough internal comparisons, Synapsen finds cards that share catchwords. Every card is registered in a network of its own knowledge, which can be hypertextually tracked by the mouse-clicking user. In this way, the card catalog delivers unexpected connections and associates lines of argumentation via terms and relevant texts/locations that might not be seen or considered by the user — perhaps it was even forgotten. The card catalog in fact becomes an autonomous communication partner and helping hand of its own.
Some Features of the Program
- Runs on all current operating systems (Windows, macOS, linux, unix).
- Automatic or individual connections between all cards through common headwords.
- Easy editing, searching and viewing of reference entries.
- Direct connection to MS Word and Open Office 3.0 in order to support footnote insertion by one click
- Direct search and download from OPACs like Library of Congress, Bibliothèque Nationale, or GBV via the z39.50 interface.
- Scanning of the barcode and automatic retrieval of bibliographic information
- Extensive printing interface
- Embedding of your pdf, html-, txt-, rtf-documents as well as images
- Produces fully BibTeX compliant output, tight connection to LaTeX, but also to word processors via RTF and copy & paste.
- Many individual formatting features while creating the bibliographical output
- Data import and export via BibTeX, PDF and RTF, RefWorks and Citavi.
- Support of the biblatex package
- Complete support of Unicode, i.e. you can simultaneosly work with many different alphabets like cyrillic, hebrew or chinese etc.
- Support of SQL for the internal database server in order to procure future compatibility of your data. Linkage to external databases like mySQL also possible.
- A network version of Synapsen is available which supports editing of one online-database for many remote researchers.