Feature Comparison

Disclaimer: The following information may be out of date. If you notice any errors, please contact us.

Notes: Blue Book Report 4.0 does not feature a brief editor; it just formats and stores a database of cards, which you can organize into briefs using a conventional word processor. Thus, some categories are not entirely applicable to it. Blue Book Report 3.0 (which did feature a brief editor) is no longer available for use, but is retained here for reference purposes.

FactsmithEvidence ScribeEvScribe WebBBR 3.0BBR 4.0(word processor)
Cost
Free? YES NO NO NO NO YES
Operating System
Windows YES YES YES YES YES YES
Macintosh NO NO YES YES YES YES
Linux YES NO YES YES YES YES
Database Structure
Cards separate YES YES YES YES YES NO
Sources separate1YESYESYESYESYESNO
Authors separate YES NO NO NO NO NO
Card database2SORT OFNOYESYESYESNO
Cross-brief sources NO NO YES YES NO NO
Brief File Formats
BRF (Factsmith) YES NO NO NO NO NO
xBrief (EvScribe) MOSTLYYES NO NO NO NO
OpenBrief (OBF) YES NO NO YES NO NO
Export File Formats
Word (doc) YES YES YES YES SORT OFYES
Word (docx) NO YES YES NO SORT OFYES
OpenDocument (odt) YES YES YES NO SORT OFYES
PDF NO NO NO YES NO YES
HTML YES YES YES NO NO YES
iPhone Webpage YES NO YES NO NO NO
Rich Text (RTF) YES YES YES NO NO YES
BBCode YES NO NO NO NO PARTIAL
Formatting Features
Automatic Formatting YES YES YES YES YES NO
Format Customizable3YESYES NONONOYES
Citations Customizable4YESPARTIALNONONOYES
Paragraph Styles YES YES YES NO NO YES
Table of Contents YES YES YES NO NO YES
Headers and Footers YES YES YES YES NO YES
No Cross-Page Cards YES YES YES YES NO MANUAL
Shrink Underlining YES NO NO NO NO MANUAL
Easy Style Switching YES MOSTLYNONO NO NO
Date Standardization YES YES YES NO NO NO
Data Entry
No Window Switching5YESYESYESYESYESNO
Drag-and-Drop Entry YES YES YES YES YES PARTIAL
Screen-To-Text YES NO NO NO NO NO
Line Break Removal YES YES YES NO NO NO
Auto Access Dates YES YES YES NO NO NO
Title Autocomplete YES YES YES NO NO NO
Case Change YES NO NO NO NO PARTIAL
Spellcheck NO NO YES YES YES YES
Evidence Formatting
Underline YES YES YES YES YES YES
Strikethrough YES NO YES NO NO YES
Bold YES NO NO NO NO YES
Italic YES NO NO NO NO YES
Advanced YES NO NO NO NO YES
Images YES NO NO NO NO YES
Citation Emphasis6YESNONOYESYESYES
Interface
Looks Like Final NO NO NO MOSTLYSORT OFYES
Compact Brief View YES YESYESMOSTLYNO NO
Drag-n-Drop Sorting YES NO YES YES NO PARTIAL
Undo/Redo YES NO NO NO NO YES
Online Features
Web-Based NO NO YES YES YES YES
Works Offline YES YES NO NO NO YES
Online Collaboration YES NO YES NO NO YES
Online Storage/BackupYES NO YES YES YES YES
Offline Storage/BackupYES YES NO PARTIALSORT OFYES
Extra Features
Automatic Sorting YES YES NO NO NO NO
Automatic Updates YES YES YES YES YES YES
Brief Versioning7MOSTLYNOYESNONOMANUAL
Built-In Brief Tree YES YESPARTIALNONO NO
Bulk Brief Export YES NO NO YES NO NO
Internal Email Tool YES YES YES NO NO YES
Print Directly YES NO NO NO NO YES
Quality Rankings YES YES YES NO NO NO
Source Standards8YESYESNONONONO
Statistics Display YES YES YES NO NO NO
Subfolders9YESYESYESNOYESYES
Text Speech Content YES NO NO YES YES YES
Updated Briefs List YES NO YES NO NO NO

[1] BBR has evidence filed under sources, instead of separately; thus they are functionally, but not literally, separate.

[2] BBR and EvScribe Web both use a card database integrally (cards are stored in a central database and can be reused in several briefs.) Factsmith features a card-collection-recall tool. The desktop version of Evidence Scribe allows you to easily find the card, but requires you to copy it manually.

[3] EvScribe Web allows limited tweaking of formatting options, but for the most part the formatting is fixed. BBR's formatting is not customizable at all beyond very basic content options.

[4] EvScribe Web does allow very limited tweaking of citation order, but not enough to list as "customizable" here.

[5] This does not include manual window-arrangement tricks to reduce switching.

[6] Both versions of Evidence Scribe support hard-setting citation emphasis (for example, always underline organization and date) but not case-specific customization of emphasis.

[7] Factsmith stores modification dates. EvScribe Web tracks modified cards to give you an idea of how much has changed.

[8] The existence of this feature in EvScribe Web is advertised on the website, but some users have reported that it is unavailable in everyday use. A club administrator account may be required to modify the settings.

[9] As of May 2010, this feature is broken in EvScribe Web. This will likely be fixed in the future.