I'm not sure how other authors handle the requirements for research when developing their novels.  I find myself focusing on different elements of the story at different times in the development process.

In the first development phase where I'm laying out the story, I typically find myself doing research on technologies.  For the design of "Outsourced," for example, I found myself researching Unmanned Ariel Vehicles or UAVs (a.k.a. drones).

During the first draft of a book, I tend to focus my research on two things -- locations, and to a lesser degree, weapons.  To reduce the amount of digging around on the internet, I  like to place scenes of my novels in places I've actually been.  "Outsourced" has a long chase scene at the Forbidden City in Beijing.  Later there is a scene at the famous "Long Bar" in the Shanghai Club along the Bund.  I've been to both of these places.  While I still find myself looking up some facts on the internet, having been there in the flesh gives me the "feel" of the location.

In later edits of the book, I tend to fill out place descriptions and do a lot of fact-checking.  Research at that stage typically involves spot-checking certain items on the web.

Many of my novels have an international element, as well, which often results in foreign words finding their way into the dialog.  I typically take a first cut at these using Google Translate, and then have them reviewed by a native speaker.  In most cases, the reader doesn't actually have to understand the words, anyway, just grasp their general meaning.  I like them, however, to be perfect.

Research is an integral part of writing.  Having access to information at my fingertips sure makes developing a novel a lot easier.  I can't imagine how challenging this was in the "old days."