I haven’t tried using too many different citations programs. The one that I have used is Mendeley. I can’t say that I’m terribly impressed. It’s not that it doesn’t work well, because it does exactly what it says it does. I just think that it takes more time to use the program than to just create the works cited citations, and type in the in text citations. I think making the extra clicks to insert an in text citation not only wastes time, but also stops your train of thought and hinders the writing process.
Citation formats also are updating fairly frequently, and citation generators aren’t always current with the updated formats. For example. Last year MLA updated its format to what it called MLA 8. It took the citation generators months to provide an update that produced MLA instead of MLA 7. Even after that update came out, you would often have to double check the citations generated to ensure they were in the MLA 8 format and not 7.
For the most part, I stay away from citation generators as much as possible. I consult Purdue OWL’s style guide to ensure that my citations are correct. I find it just as easy to follow their template, as it is to type in every bit of info into a generator. Or going through and double checking that the info the generator retrieved was the correct info. (I’ve also gotten burned there. Trusting a generator blindly to find the author… dumb on my part).
I’m interested to know how other people go about getting their citations.