Import PDF sticky notes as comments

Luke M. shared this question 56 days ago
Need Answer

Hello. I'm a new user to Citavi, and I'm interested in importing PDFs that I've previously annotated directly within Acrobat. Previously, I've highlighted passages, and then attached sticky notes to those highlights with summaries, responses, and other notes, like so:5b7c3a59e6d374226845a3e753ac9ec4


I was hoping these annotations would be preserved when importing the PDFs to Citavi, however, I only see the highlights, and none of the annotations are visible, as seen here:

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Is there any way to import these annotations into Citavi? I have hundreds of old, annotated PDFs that I would love to import so I can make connections and references between old research and new research. But if I have to manually re-type the comments and marginalia I've written in hundreds of books and articles, Citavi might not be the tool for me! Is there a way to import these comments?

Comments (4)

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Dear Luke,


Welcome to Citavi and thank you for your question!


Unfortunately, Citavi can only import your highlighted text passages as quotations.

Other annotations can only be displayed if you click Tools > Show all annotations. However, they cannot be imported automatically.

For sticky notes, only the location of the notes is visible in Citavi but not its content.

To open the PDF file in your standard PDF viewer, please click Tools > Open in [your PDF viewer]


Kind regards,

Jana

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2

That's a shame. And it doesn't look like Citavi allows users to make scripts or create extensions/plug-ins that might be able to add that functionality. So it looks like if I start using Citavi, I'm creating a workspace that excludes hundreds of hours of previous research. I'll need to think about this.

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Dear Luke,

Your suggestion is already included in our internal wish list for our developers, who are currently busy with Citavi Web.

However, you can use macros and create add-ons in Citavi. Another user has already created a PDF toolbox add-on which you might be able to adapt to your needs.

Kind regards

Jana

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You can write your own plugins. I wrote a plugin to automatically import annotations, including their text, as knowledge items. I don't have English instructions, but the German one should give you an idea as to what it does by just looking at the pictures. You are more than welcome to use that as a basis to implement automatically importing comments. In fact, that should be relatively trivial. They won't be linked with a specific text selection, though, I assume.

EDIT: Sorry, I didn't see Jana’s comment, which does in fact say the same thing I did. Anyways, relatively trivial to do the comment part, just need to iterate through all the comments in PDFTron the same way my plugin iterates through all the highlights, get the text, and use that as a basis to create a new knowledge item in Citavi.

ANOTHER EDIT: Hold on, if I understand correctly what is going on here, than my AddOn already does exactly what is desired. The "sticky note" is not a PDF annotation of the sort "comment" (i.e. a floating comment), it is simply the text of the annotation of the highlight variety. Adobe has a bit of an idiosyncratic way of displaying those. Anyways, that is exactly what my AddOn imports automatically as a knowledge item.

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Thanks for sharing! Looking at the tutorial, it does indeed seem like your plugin does just what I need!


However, after installing it, none of the menu options in the tutorial show up in my copy of Citavi. My menu just looks like this:

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Is your plugin not for Citavi 6? Or is there something else that needs to be done to activate apart from creating the AddOns folder and pasting the .dll?

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Hi Luke, Sorry about that. It should work. I use Citavi 6.3.18 (the newest beta), so it definitely does work in Citavi 6. Did you download the latest version of the DLL (the 20191030 one)?

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Hi SirPounce,

The German instructions still link to version 0.2 of the DLL. Thanks for updating it!

Best regards,

Jana

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