Homepage of Martin Dehler  
  Home | STPS - Switch to PubMed Search | Author  




STPS - Switch to PubMed Search

My problem

I was using Reference Manager for several years mainly for collecting references and creating bibliographies when I was more and more bothered by the number of keystrokes and mouse clicks needed to perform a PubMed search within RefMan. So I started to write a VBA macro to 'remote control' Reference Manager by sending keystrokes and mouse clicks to RefMan. This soultion wasn't very practical for several reasons (presumably due to lack of my VBA capabilities...). Then I stumbled over a report about AutoIt in a computer magazine. 'AutoIt v3 is a freeware BASIC-like scripting language designed for automating the Windows GUI and general scripting.' (cited from the AutoIt website). So I thought this might be the right tool to ease the task of adding single references from PubMed into my Reference Manager database.

A solution ?

STPS - Switch to PubMed Search - is a small utility programmed with AutoIt that 'remote controls' Reference Manager. As STPS was purpose built for my personal needs, it has only two features and I cannot guarantee that it works with your setup. But I hope that it will not only help me to keep a literature database up to date and thus eases writing scientific papers and creating bibliographies.

STPS - Switch to PubMed Search - Screenshot   STPS features:
  1. Activate PubMed Search  RefMan window is brought to foreground and internet search is activated with PubMed as database to search.
  2. Search PubMed  RefMan window is brought to foreground, internet search is activated with PubMed as database to search and a PubMed search is performed with the search terms entered in STPS.

Why are there only three fields to search?  Because I use STPS primarily to add single references while reading papers or references I got from colleagues. My experience was, that these three informations are suitable to find single references in PubMed. I prefer to make detailed and extensive PubMed searches on the PubMed internet site and then import the PubMed search results into RefMan (especially because of the 'Related Articles' link in PubMed). As the source code of STPS is freely availbale you can adapt STPS to your personal needs if you want.

Programmed with

Version 0.10 - initial release (20.07.2005)

Download and Installation

Feel free to use and/or modify STPS for your personal needs. It's freeware. I cannot guarantee that STPS works with your setup, just give it a try. I use STPS with Reference Manager Version 10 on a Windows XP PC.

  • Standalone executable (120KB)  Save STPS.exe anywhere on your harddisk and create a link on the desktop or in the start menu to run STPS.
  • Source code (4KB)  If you want to see how STPS works, want to modify it or adapat it to your needs you may download the source code. To run the source code you will need to install AutoIt on your computer.

Please mail bug reports, comments and suggestions to martin.dehler@gmx.de.


STPS is free software. If STPS works for you and you feel it saves you substantially time, a small donation makes me smile and perhaps think about further improvements of STPS.



  Top Valid HTML 4.01! © by Martin Dehler 2005. Last update on 29.05.2006.  
   visitors since 20.07.2005 Valid CSS!E-mail the Webmaster.