In Ted’s recent comments on connotea, he said he enjoyed it, but found that connotea was not such a great citation manager; it doesn’t always gather the metadata needed. On the connotea site, it explains that it is “specially designed for scientists and clinicians,” so it gathers bibliographic data better for some sites than others.
I agree, connotea is no substitute for a bibliographic reference manager like Endnote (to which Duke subscribes) or Refworks. I also agree that it’s “downright fun!” As a librarian, I use it as an academic networking tool, to find, track and tag resources as I come across them. It’s very handy for retrieving items on a particular topic, and for creating feeds for specific classes–I tag resources with the course name.
Ted was also concerned about messy tags. The “related tags” on the right belong to other users, who may create them however they’d like.
That’s both the beauty and the chaos of a Web 2.0 tool–everyone gets to play, and you can follow their leads, or not.
So, the short answer is: the value of connotea depends on your purpose. For a free web-based citation manager, you might like to try zotero (from an earlier LibraryHacks post):
Has anyone out there done more than a first foray into zotero? Please send us your comments.