Testing plugins to embed bib citation feeds into WordPress posts/pages, 3/2012

2/14/2014 Update:

I think most of this post is now out of date because plugins have been updated since I did this review.


This was just a quick test I did this evening to see how to embed bibliographic citations into a wordpress post using Mendeley and Zotero feeds. I don’t know at what point a citation collection would become too large for these plugins to function properly.

I’m interested in comments and suggestions for other methods that you like and find easy to manage.

I did three tests:

  • Test 1: “Embed RSS” Plugin
  • Test 2: “Mendeley” plugin
  • Test 3: “Zotpress” zotero plugin

Test 1: “Embed RSS” Plugin http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/embed-rss/

Install plugin and use shortcode to embed any RSS feed into a page or post.

Below is an RSS feed from a Mendeley public group I set up for this test, displaying the first 20 citations in my Mendeley group library of 27 citations.

I’d like to be able to display all of my 27 Mendeley items. I’ve set the rss feed widget to display “all” and then “150” items but it only seems to display 20 maximum citations. I don’t know if this is a limit of the widget or Mendeley.

To get an rss feed from Mendeley: create a pubic group, put some citations in it. Go to group home page. The URL should be something like this: http://www.mendeley.com/groups/1999023/vinopal-s-test-mendeley-group/
Append feed/rss to that URL to get the rss feed URL.

I can’t get the code to work in this post. The odd thing is the exact same code, copied and pasted, works in a page. See here: http://vinopal.org/2013/03/08/testing-embedding-playlists/

Odd, too, that the description of the plugin says specifically that it’s designed to work in posts.

Oh well.


Test 2: Mendeley plugin http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/mendeleyplugin/

Installed plugin then registered API on Mendeley dev website. Got API keys and entered them into plugin. The you just use a short code to embed bib from a Mendeley group or folder into your WordPress page or post.

It looks like I’m not able to get the display to work based on the group ID number. Here’s the shortcode that’s not working:

[mendeley type=”groups” id=”1999023″ sortby=”year” sortorder=”desc”]

However the embed works with the code based on the folder ID number. Here’s the shortcode that has inserted my entire Mendeley library appear below:

[mendeley type=”folders” id=”24954733″ groupby=”year”]

As you can see, I’ve chosen to group citations by year. You can also group by author.

I don’t like the out-of-the-box formatting of the citations (see below). You can modify style of the citation by updating the CSS, but I don’t want to have to do that. I especially don’t like that the items’ URL and PDF simply display “URL” or “PDF” as links rather than displaying the URL iteself.

My Test Mendeley Library:
[mendeley type=”folders” id=”24954733″ groupby=”year”]

Test 3: Zotpress zotero plugin http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/zotpress/

I installed the plugin then entered my account information then created a private key on the Zotero site (under Settings > Feeds/API) and entered that info into the plugin. In the plugin, under “Options” you pick your citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago–there are 10 to choose from). You put your shortcode wherever you want the bib to appear, insert your user ID or collection ID (depending on what you want to display) and, voilà!

Out of the box this is the best plugin of the three. You can also use this tool to make in-text citations (which I’m not trying here). When you’re writing a post or page, a Zotpress Reference tool appears on that page and helps you create shortcode for the kind of citation you need. Once you’re done adding information to your shortcode, just copy and paste it into your text.

This is the shortcode I used to embed below all the citations from one of my Zotero folders:
[zotpress collection=”44CX59EJ” limit=”500″]

My Test Zotero Library:
[zotpress collection=”44CX59EJ” limit=”500″]

3/16/2012 Update:
Example of the “Embed RSS” widget working correctly on a page, whereas the exact same shortcode doesn’t work when pasted into a post (see above).

[cetsEmbedRSS id=”http://www.mendeley.com/groups/1999023/vinopal-s-test-mendeley-group/feed/rss/” itemcount=’150′ itemauthor=’1′ itemdate=’1′ itemcontent=’150′]