Summarize Articles: Free AI tools for Research Paper Understanding

Andy Stapleton
8 Jan 202408:05

TLDRThis video introduces two free AI tools, 'Size.Space' and 'Explain Paper', that simplify the process of reading and understanding academic papers without the need for subscription fees. 'Size.Space' offers features like literature review, data extraction, and AI co-pilot reading, while 'Explain Paper' provides unlimited text explanations to aid comprehension. Both tools are praised for their ease of use and ability to save time by summarizing and clarifying complex research content.


  • 💸 Many AI tools for reading academic papers require a subscription, which can be costly.
  • 🆓 Two free AI tools are Size.Space and ExplainPaper, which help in understanding academic papers without a subscription.
  • 📚 Size.Space offers a dashboard with features like literature review, data extraction from PDFs, AI co-pilot reading, and paraphrasing.
  • 🔍 Size.Space's 'Extract Data from PDFs' feature allows users to upload a PDF and receive a summarized abstract and conclusions.
  • 🤖 The AI co-pilot in Size.Space can answer questions, provide explanations, and help with understanding highlighted text in a paper.
  • 📘 ExplainPaper works similarly to the co-pilot in Size.Space, offering explanations and follow-up questions for free.
  • 📑 When using ExplainPaper, users can adjust the level of explanation complexity to match their understanding, from a middle schooler to an expert.
  • 📝 Both tools allow users to highlight and interact with text, making it easier to digest complex academic content.
  • 🔑 Size.Space has limitations on usage, but the speaker has not encountered issues with the library becoming too full.
  • 📈 For a deeper understanding, start with the abstract, skim the paper, and use the co-pilot or ExplainPaper for sections that need clarification.
  • 🆓 Currently, both Size.Space and ExplainPaper are free, but users should be aware that this may change as businesses often seek monetization.

Q & A

  • What is the main issue discussed in the transcript regarding AI tools for reading academic papers?

    -The main issue discussed is the cost associated with many AI tools that claim to help with reading academic papers, which often require a subscription or payment, making them inaccessible for some users.

  • What are the two free AI tools for reading academic papers mentioned in the transcript?

    -The two free AI tools mentioned are 'Size.Space' and 'Explain Paper', which offer features like summarizing papers, extracting data from PDFs, and providing explanations for highlighted text.

  • What feature of Size.Space does the transcript highlight as particularly useful?

    -The transcript highlights the 'Extract data from PDFs' feature of Size.Space, which allows users to upload a PDF and receive a summary and conclusions.

  • How does the AI co-pilot feature in Size.Space assist users in understanding academic papers?

    -The AI co-pilot feature allows users to upload a paper, highlight sections they want to understand better, and then ask the AI to summarize, explain, or provide related papers, helping to clarify complex information.

  • What is the purpose of the 'Read with AI co-pilot' feature in Size.Space?

    -The purpose of the 'Read with AI co-pilot' feature is to provide users with a way to interact with the text of an academic paper, asking questions and getting explanations to better understand the content.

  • What does the transcript suggest as a starting point for reading an academic paper using the AI co-pilot?

    -The transcript suggests starting with the abstract of the paper and then skimming the document, highlighting sections that are unclear, and using the AI co-pilot to get explanations for those sections.

  • How does Explain Paper differ from Size.Space in terms of functionality?

    -Explain Paper offers similar functionalities to the co-pilot in Size.Space, such as providing explanations for highlighted text, but it does not include additional features like data extraction from PDFs or paraphrasing.

  • What is the advantage of using Explain Paper over Size.Space if a user runs out of credits in Size.Space?

    -Explain Paper is completely free and offers unlimited explanations, making it a useful alternative when a user has exhausted their credits in Size.Space.

  • How does the transcript describe the process of using Explain Paper to understand an academic paper?

    -The transcript describes the process as starting with skimming the abstract, highlighting sections for explanation, and then asking Explain Paper to provide a simplified explanation suitable for the user's comprehension level.

  • What is the importance of summarizing academic papers according to the transcript?

    -Summarizing academic papers is important as it saves time and allows users to quickly grasp the key points of a paper without having to read the entire document.

  • What additional resources does the transcript mention for those interested in further learning about academic papers and AI tools?

    -The transcript mentions an 'effus Academia course' with downloadable resources and book recommendations, and a video discussing the potential end of traditional academic papers due to AI tools.



📚 Frustrations with Subscription-based AI Academic Tools

The speaker expresses frustration with the cost of AI tools for reading academic papers, mentioning several services with their subscription fees. They critique the complexity of some services and the high costs, which they find excessive. The speaker then introduces two free AI tools, Size.Space and Explain Paper, which they use for summarizing and understanding academic papers without a subscription.


🔍 Introducing Size.Space and Explain Paper for Academic Reading

The speaker provides a detailed walkthrough of using Size.Space, highlighting its features such as literature review, data extraction from PDFs, AI co-pilot reading, and paraphrasing. They demonstrate uploading a PDF and using the 'too long; didn't read' summary feature, as well as the AI co-pilot for explanations and follow-up questions. The speaker also introduces Explain Paper, emphasizing its free, unlimited explanations and the ability to ask questions in context. They suggest starting with abstracts and skimming, then using these tools for deeper understanding, and conclude by recommending these tools for saving time and simplifying academic reading.



💡AI tools

AI tools, or Artificial Intelligence tools, are software applications that utilize machine learning and natural language processing to assist with tasks such as reading, summarizing, and understanding academic papers. In the video, the speaker discusses the use of AI tools to simplify the process of comprehending research papers, highlighting the benefits of using such tools without the need for a subscription.


A subscription refers to a payment model where users pay a recurring fee to access a service or product. The script mentions several AI services that require a subscription, indicating the cost as a barrier for some users. The speaker advocates for free AI tools as an alternative to these subscription-based services.

💡Academic papers

Academic papers are scholarly articles that present research findings and are typically published in peer-reviewed journals. The video's theme revolves around the difficulty of reading and understanding these papers, and how AI tools can assist in making this process more manageable.

💡Literature review

A literature review is a comprehensive analysis of previously published research on a particular topic. In the context of the video, the speaker mentions the ability of AI tools to assist in conducting literature reviews, which is a critical part of academic research.

💡Data extraction

Data extraction is the process of pulling specific information from a larger set of data. The script describes a feature of the 'Size Space' tool that allows users to upload PDFs and extract key data, which is useful for summarizing and understanding the content of academic papers.

💡AI co-pilot

The term 'AI co-pilot' refers to an AI tool that assists users in reading and understanding documents. In the video, the speaker demonstrates how this feature allows users to ask questions and get simplified explanations of complex text within academic papers.


Paraphrasing involves rewording a piece of text to convey the same meaning using different words. The video mentions the capability of the 'Size Space' tool to paraphrase content, which can help in understanding and summarizing academic papers.


Summarization is the process of condensing a larger piece of text into a shorter version while retaining the main points. The script discusses the importance of summarization in quickly grasping the essence of academic papers, with AI tools facilitating this process.

💡Explain Paper

Explain Paper is one of the free AI tools mentioned in the video that provides explanations for highlighted sections of academic papers. It is used to simplify complex concepts for better understanding, offering explanations at different educational levels.


An abstract is a brief summary at the beginning of an academic paper that outlines the main points and findings. The speaker in the video emphasizes starting with the abstract when using AI tools to understand a paper, as it provides a quick overview of the content.

💡Follow-up questions

Follow-up questions are additional inquiries made to gain further clarification or details. In the context of the video, the AI co-pilot feature allows users to ask follow-up questions about specific parts of an academic paper to deepen their understanding.


Reading academic papers can be a daunting task, but there are AI tools available to assist.

Many AI tools for reading papers require a subscription fee, which can be prohibitive.

OpenReads, ChatPDF, Humata, Lateral, Paperbrain, and Unriddle are mentioned as subscription-based tools.

The speaker introduces two free AI tools for academic paper reading: Size.Space and ExplainPaper.

Size.Space offers a dashboard with various features including literature review and data extraction from PDFs.

Size.Space's 'Extract Data from PDFs' feature allows users to upload a paper for quick summarization.

AI Co-Pilot in Size.Space helps in reading papers by answering questions and providing explanations.

The speaker recommends starting with the abstract and skimming the paper, then using AI Co-Pilot for unclear sections.

ExplainPaper offers free, unlimited explanations and follow-up questions on highlighted text.

ExplainPaper simplifies complex academic language to make it understandable for different levels of expertise.

Both Size.Space and ExplainPaper provide an efficient way to summarize and understand academic papers without a subscription.

The speaker emphasizes the importance of using these tools for quick summaries and deeper dives into papers.

The video also discusses the potential end of traditional academic papers due to the development of AI tools.

The speaker provides a course link in the description for further academic reading assistance.

The video concludes with a call to action to check out the mentioned tools for free academic paper reading.

There is mention of a potential change in the availability of these free tools due to monetization strategies.

The speaker suggests that these tools can save hours of reading time by simplifying and summarizing academic content.